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From the Library of 





















Former Austro-Hungarian Minister 
of Foreign Affairs 

% ■ 

Harper & Brothers Publishers 

New York and London 

In the World War 

Copyright 1920, by Harper & Brothers 

Printed in the United States of America 

Published March, 1920 


L ' RT BOSTON - r.Tvt i ftf 



Preface vii 

I. Introductory Reflections i 

II. Konopischt 39 

III. William II 60 

IV. Rumania 87 

V. The U-Boat Warfare 129 

VI. Attempts at Peace 150 

VII. Wilson 209 

VIII. Impressions and Reflections 217 

IX. Poland 222 

X. Brest-Litovsk 235 

XL The Peace of Bukharest 287 

XII. Final Reflections 302 

Appendix 3^7 

Index . . . 369 


It is impossible in a small volume to write the history 
of the World War in even a partially exhaustive manner. 
Nor is that the object of the book. 

Rather than to deal with generalities, its purpose is 
to describe separate events of which I had intimate 
knowledge, and individuals with whom I came into 
close contact and could, therefore, observe closely; in 
fact, to furnish a series of snapshots of the great drama. 

By this means the following pages may possibly pre- 
sent a conception of the war as a whole, which may, 
nevertheless, differ in many respects from the hitherto 
recorded, and possibly faulty, history of the war. 

Every one regards people and events from his own 
point of view ; it is inevitable. In my book, I speak of 
men with whom I was in close touch; of others who 
crossed my path without leaving any personal im- 
pression on me; and finally, of men with whom I was 
often in grave dispute. I endeavor to judge of them 
all in objective fashion, but I have to describe people 
and things as I saw them. Wherever the description 
appears to be at fault, the reason will not be due to a 
prematurely formed opinion, but rather, probably, to a 
prevailing lack of the capacity for judging. 

Not everything could be revealed. Much was not 
explained, although it could have been. Too short a 
period still separates us from those events to justify the 
lifting of the veil from all that happened. 

But what remains unspoken can in no way change the 
whole picture which I describe exactly as imprinted on 
my mind. 

Count Ottokar Czernin. 


/ i 





THE bursting of a thunder-storm is preceded by cer- 
tain definite phenomena in the atmosphere. The 
electric currents separate, and the storm is the result 
of atmospheric tension which can no longer be repressed. 
Whether or no we become aware of these happenings 
through outward signs, whether the clouds appear to 
us more or less threatening, nothing can alter the fact 
that the electric tension is bound to make itself felt 
before the storm bursts. 

For years the political barometer of the European 
Ministries of Foreign Affairs had stood at ' ' storm. ' ' It 
rose periodically, to fall again; it varied — naturally; 
but for years everything had pointed to the fact that 
the peace of the world was in danger. 

The obvious beginnings of this European tension 
date back several years, to the time of Edward VII. 
On the on ehand, England's dread of the gigantic growth 
of Germany; on the other hand, Berlin's politics, which 
had become a terror to the dwellers by the Thames; 
the belief that the idea of acquiring the dominion of 
the world had taken root in Berlin. These fears, partly 
due merely to envy and jealousy, but partly due also 


to a positive anxiety concerning existence — these fears 
led to the encircHng poHcy of Edward VII, and thus 
was started the great drive against Germany. It is 
well known that Edward VII made an attempt to 
exercise a direct influence on the Emperor Francis 
Joseph to induce him to secede from the Alliance and 
join the Powers encircling Germany. It is likewise 
known that the Emperor Francis Joseph rejected the 
proposal, and that this decided the fate of Austria- 
Hungary. From that day we were no longer the in- 
dependent masters of our destiny. Our fate was 
Imked to that of Germany; without being conscious 
of it, we were carried away by Germany through the 

I do not mean absolutely to deny that, during the 
years preceding war, it would still have been possible 
for Germany to avert it if she had eradicated from 
European public opinion all suspicion respecting her 
dream of world-dominion, for far be it from me to assert 
that the Western Powers were eager for war. On the 
contrary, it is my firm conviction that the leading 
statesmen of the Western Powers viewed the situation 
as such, that if they did not succeed in defeating Ger- 
many, the unavoidable result would be a German 
world-domination. I mention the Western Powers, for 
I believe that a strong military party in Russia, which 
had as chief the Grand Duke Nicholas Nicholaievitch, 
thought otherwise, and began this war with satisfac- 
tion. The terrible tragedy of this, the greatest mis- 
fortune of all time — and such is this war — lies in the 
fact that nobody responsible willed it; it arose out of 
a situation created first by a Serbian assassin and then 
by some Russian generals keen on war, while the events 
that ensued took the monarchs and statesmen com- 
pletely by surprise. The Entente group of Powers is 
as much to blame as we are. As regards this, however, 


a very considerable difference must be made between 
the enemy states. In 19 14 neither France nor England 
desired war. France had always cherished the thought 
of revenge, but, judging from all indications, she had 
no intention of fighting in 19 14; but, on the contrary 
— as she did fifty years ago — left the decisive moment 
for entering into war to the future. The war came 
quite as a surprise to France. England, in spite of her 
anti-German policy, wished to remain neutral and only 
changed her mind owing to the invasion of Belgium. 
In Russia the Tsar did not know what he wanted, and 
the military party urged unceasingly for war. As a 
matter of fact, Russia began military operations with- 
out a declaration of war. 

The states that followed after — Italy and Rumania 
— entered into the war for purposes of conquest, 
Rumania in particular. Italy also, of course, but, 
owing to her geographical position, and being exposed 
to pressure from England, she was less able to remain 
neutral than Rumania. 

But the war would never have broken out had it not 
been that the growing suspicion of the Entente as to 
Germany's plans had already brought the situation to 
boiling-point. The spirit and demeanor of Germany, 
the speeches of the Emperor William, the behavior of 
the Prussians throughout the world — whether in the 
case of a general at Potsdam or a commis voyageur out 
in East Africa — these Prussian manners inflicting them- 
selves upon the world, the ceaseless boasting of their 
own power and the clattering of swords, roused through- 
out the whole world a feeling of antipathy and alarm, 
and effected that moral coalition against Germany 
which in this war has founds such terribly practical 
expression. On the other hand, I am fairly convinced 
that German, or rather Prussian, tendencies have been 
misunderstood by the world, and that the leading Ger- 


man statesmen never had any intention of acquiring 
world-dominion. They wished to retain Germany's 
place in the sun, her rank among the first Powers of 
the world; it was undoubtedly her right, but the real 
and alleged continuous German provocation and the 
ever-growing fears of the Entente in consequence 
created just that fatal competition in armaments and 
that coalition policy which burst like a terrible thunder- 
storm into the war. 

It was only on the basis of these European fears that 
the French plans of revenge developed into action. 
England would never have drawn the sword merely 
for the conquest of Alsace-Lorraine; but the French 
plan of revenge was admirably adapted to suit the 
policy inaugurated by King Edward, which was derived 
not from French, but from English motives. 

Out of this dread of attack and defense arose that 
mad fever for armaments which was characteristic of 
pre-war times. The race to possess more soldiers and 
more guns than one's neighbor was carried to an absurd 
extreme. The armaments which the nations had to 
bear had become so cumbersome as to be unbearable, 
and for long it had been obvious to every one that the 
course entered upon could no longer be pursued, and 
that two possibilities alone remained — either a volun- 
tary and general disarmament, or war. 

A slight attempt at the first alternative was made 
in 191 2 through negotiations between Germany and 
England respecting naval disarmament, but never got 
beyond the first stage. England was no readier for 
peace, and no more disposed to make advances, than 
was Germany, but she was cleverer and succeeded in 
conveying to the world that she was the Power en- 
dangered by Germany's plans for expansion. 

I recollect a very telling illustration of the German 
and British points of view, given to me by a prominent 


politician from a neutral state. This gentleman was 
crossing the Atlantic on an American steamer, and 
among the other travelers were a well-known German 
industrial magnate and an Englishman. The German 
was a great talker and preferred addressing as large 
an audience as possible, expatiating on the ''uprising" 
of Germany, on the irrepressible desire for expansion 
to be found in the German people, on the necessity of 
impregnating the world with German culture, and on 
the progress made in all these endeavors. He dis- 
coursed on the rising prosperity of German trade in 
different parts of the world; he enumerated the towns 
where the German flag was flying; he pointed out 
with emphasis how ''Made in Germany" was the term 
that must and would conquer the world, and did not 
fail to assert that all these grand projects were built on 
solid foundations upheld by military support. Such 
was the German. When my informant turned to the 
silent, quietly smiling Englishman and asked what he 
had to say to it, he simply answered, ' ' There is no need 
for me to say anything, for I know that the world 
belongs to us." Such was the EngHshman. This 
merely illustrates a certain frame of mind. It is a 
snapshot, showing how the German and the EngHsh 
mentahty was reflected in the brain of a neutral states- 
man; but it is symptomatic, because thousands have 
felt the same, and because this impression of the Ger- 
man spirit contributed so largely to the catastrophe. 
The Aehrenthal policy, contrary to what we were 
accustomed to on the Ballplatz, pursued ambitious 
plans for expansion with the greatest strength and 
energy, thereby adding to the suspicions of the world 
regarding us. For the belief gained credence that the 
Vienna policy was an offshoot of that of Berlin, and 
that the same line of action would be adopted in 
Vienna as in Berlin, and the general feeling of anxiety 


rose higher. Blacker and blacker grew the clouds; 
closer and closer the meshes of the net ; misfortune was 
on the way. 


I was in Constantinople shortly before the outbreak 
of war, and while there had a lengthy discussion of the 
political situation with the Markgraf Pallavicini, our 
most efficient and far-seeing ambassador there. He 
looked upon the situation as being extremely grave. 
Aided by his experience of a decade of political observa- 
tions, he was able to put his finger on the pulse of 
Europe, and his diagnosis was as follows: that if a 
rapid change in the entire course of events did not 
intervene, we were making straight for war. He 
explained to me that he considered the only possibility 
of evading a war with Russia lay in our definitely 
renouncing all claims to influence in the Balkans and 
leaving a field to Russia. Pallavicini was quite clear 
in his own mind that such a course would mean our 
resigning the status of a great Power; but apparently 
to him even so bitter a proceeding as that was pref- 
erable to the war which he saw was impending. 
Shortly afterward I repeated this conversation to the 
Archduke and heir, Franz Ferdinand, and saw that he 
was deeply impressed by the pessimistic views of 
Pallavicini, of whom, like every one else, he had a very 
high opinion. The Archduke promised to discuss the 
question as soon as possible with the Emperor. I 
never saw him again. That was the last conversation 
I had with him, and I do not know whether he ever 
carried out his intention of discussing the matter with 
the monarch. 

The two Balkan wars were as a summer lightning 
before the coming European thunder-storm. It was 
obvious to any one acquainted with Balkan conditions 


that the peace there had produced no definite result, 
and the Peace of Bukharest in 19 13, so enthusiastically 
acclaimed by Rumania, carried the germs of its death 
and its birth. Bulgaria was humiliated and reduced; 
Rumania and, above all, Serbia, enlarged out of all 
proportion, were arrogant to a degree that baffles 
description. Albania, as the apple of discord between 
Austria-Hungary and Italy, was a factor that gave no 
promise of relief, but only of fresh wars. In order to 
understand the excessive hatred prevailing between 
the separate nations, one must have lived in the Bal- 
kans. When this hatred came to an outburst in the 
World War the most terrible scenes were enacted, and 
as an example it was notorious that the Rumanians 
tore their Bulgarian prisoners to pieces with their teeth, 
and that the Bulgarians, on their part, tortured the 
Rumanian prisoners to death in the most shocking 
manner. The brutality of the Serbians in the war 
can best be described by our own troops. The Em- 
peror Francis Joseph clearly foresaw that the peace 
after the second Balkan war was merely a respite to 
draw breath before a new war. Prior to my departure 
for Bukharest in 19 13 I was received in audience by 
the aged Emperor, who said to me: ''The Peace of 
Bukharest is untenable, and we are faced by a new 
war. God grant that it may be confined to the Bal- 
kans." Serbia, which had been enlarged to double 
its size, was far from being satisfied; but, on the con- 
trary, was more than ever ambitious of becoming a 
great Power. 

Apparently the situation was still quiet. In fact, a 
few weeks before the catastrophe at Sarajevo the pre- 
vailing state of affairs showed almost an improvement 
in the relations between Vienna and Belgrade. But it 
was the calm before the storm. On June 28th the veil 
was rent asunder and from one moment to the next a 


catastrophe threatened the world. The stone had 
started rolHng. 

At that time I was Ambassador to Rumania. I was 
therefore only able from a distance to watch develop- 
ments in Vienna and Berhn. Subsequently, however, 
I discussed events in those critical days with numerous 
leading personalities, and from all that I heard have 
been able to form a definite and clear view of the pro- 
ceedings. I have no doubt whatever that Berchtold, 
even in his dreams, had never thought of a world war of 
such dimensions as it assumed; that he, above all, was 
persuaded that England would remain neutral; and the 
German Ambassador, Tschirsky, confirmed him in the 
conviction that a war against France and Russia would 
inevitably end in victory. I believe that the state of 
mind in which Count Berchtold addressed the ultima- 
tum to Serbia was such that he said to himself, either — 
and this is the most favorable view — Serbia will accept 
the ultimatum, which would mean a great diplomatic 
success; or she will refuse it, and then, thanks to Ger- 
many's help, the victorious war against Russia and 
France will effect the birth of a new and vastly stronger 
monarchy. It cannot for a moment be denied that 
this argument contained a series of errors ; but it must 
be stated that, according to my convictions. Count 
Berchtold did not intend to incite war by the ultimatum, 
but hoped to the very last to gain the victory by the 
pen, and that in the German promises he saw a guar- 
antee against a war in which the participators and the 
chances of victory were equally erroneously estimated. 

Berchtold could not have entertained any doubt that 
a Serbian war would bring a Russian one in its train. 
At any rate, the reports sent by my brother, who was a 
business man in Petersburg, left him in no doubt on the 

Serbia's acceptance of the ultimatum was only par- 


tial, and the Serbian war broke out. Russia armed and 
joined in. But at this moment extremely important 
events took place. 

On July 30th, at midday, Tschirsky spoke in the Min- 
istry of Foreign Affairs, and communicated to Berchtold 
the contents of a telegram received from Lichnowsky. 
This important telegram contained the following: He 
(Lichnowsky) had just returned from seeing Grey, who 
was very grave, but perfectly collected, though pointing 
out that the situation was becoming more and more 
complicated. Sassonoff had intimated that after the 
declaration of war he was no longer in a position to 
negotiate direct with Austria-Hungary, and requested 
England to resume proceedings, the temporary cessa- 
tion of hostilities to be taken for granted. Grey pro- 
posed a negotiation between four, as it appeared pos- 
sible to him (Grey) that Austria-Hungary, after occu- 
pying Belgrade, would state her terms. 

To this Grey added a private comment, calling Lich- 
nowsky's attention to the fact that a war between 
Russia and Austria-Hungary would facihtate England's 
neutrality, but that the conditions would inevitably 
change in the event of Germany and France being 
involved. Public opinion in England, which after the 
assassination was very favorable to Austria, was now 
beginning to fluctuate, as it was difficult to understand 
Austria's obstinacy. 

Lichnowsky also added that Grey had told the Italian 
Ambassador that he thought Austria would receive 
every satisfaction on accepting negotiation. In any 
case the Serbians would be punished. Even with- 
out a war Austria would receive a guaranty for the 


Such were the contents of the communication sent 
from London by Tschirsky, to which Bethmann added 
that he urgently requested the Vienna Cabinet to 


accept the negotiation. On receiving this information, 
Berchtold conveyed the news to the Emperor. His 
position was this : that Russia was already at war with 
the Monarchy on the evening of the same day on 
which the order for general mobilization was to be sub- 
mitted to the Emperor, and it appeared doubtful to 
him whether a postponement of their own mobilization 
would be possible in view of the Russian attack. He 
had also to take into consideration the different parties 
prevailing in Russia, and no guaranty was obtainable 
that those who were in favor of negotiation would gain 
the day. Any postponement of mobilization might 
in this case lead to incalculable military consequences. 
Obviously hostihties had begun without the knowledge 
and against the wishes of the Tsar; if they were also 
to be carried on against his wish, then Austria-Hungary 
would be too late. 

I have never discussed this phase with Berchtold, but 
the material placed at my disposal leaves no doubt 
that he felt bound to inquire into this side of the ques- 
tion and then leave the decision to the Emperor Francis 


On the following day, July 31st, therefore, Tschirsky, 
at the Ballplatz, communicated the contents of a tele- 
gram from King George to Prince Henry of Prussia. 
It ran as follows : 

Thanks for telegram. So pleased to hear of William's efforts to 
concert with Nicky to maintain peace. Indeed, I am earnestly de- 
sirous that such an irreparable disaster as a European war should be 
averted. My government is doing its utmost, suggesting to Russia 
and France to suspend further military preparations if Austria will 
consent to be satisfied with occupation of Belgrade and the neigh- 
boring Serbian territory as a hostage for satisfactory settlement 
of her demands, other countries meanwhile suspending their war 
preparations. Trust William will use his great influence to induce 
Austria to accept his proposal, thus proving that Germany and 
England are working together to prevent what would be an inter- 


national catastrophe. Pray assure William I am doing and shall 
continue to do all that lies in my power to preserve peace of 



Both the telegrams cited were received in Vienna on 
July 3 ist, subject to certain military precautions, a pro- 
ceeding that did not satisfy London. 

In London, as in Berlin, an effort was made to confine 
the conflict to Serbia. Berchtold did the same. In 
Russia there was a strong party working hard to 
enforce war at any price. The Russian invasion was a 
fact, and in Vienna it was thought unwise to stop mo- 
bihzation at the last moment for fear of being too late 
with defense. Some ambassadors did not keep to the 
instructions from their governments; they communi- 
cated messages correctly enough, but if their personal 
opinion differed they made no secret of it, and it cer- 
tainly weighed in the balance. 

This added to the insecurity and confusion. Berch- 
told vacillated, torn hither and thither by different 
influences. It was a question of hours merely; but 
they passed by and were not made use of, and disaster 
was the result. 

Russia had created strained conditions which brought 
on the World War. 

Some months after the outbreak of war I had a long 
conversation on all these questions with the Hungarian 
Prime Minister, Count Stephen Tisza. He was decid- 
edly opposed to the severe ultimatum, as he foresaw a 
war and did not wish for it. It is one of the most 
widely spread errors to stigmatize Tisza to-day as one 
of the instigators of the war. He was opposed to it, 
not from a general pacifist tendency, but because, in 
his opinion, an efficiently pursued poHcy of alliance 
would in a few years considerably strengthen the 
powers of the Monarchy. He particularly returned to 


the subject of Bulgaria, which then was still neutral 
and whose support he had hoped to gain before we 
went to war. I also obtained from Tisza several details 
concerning the activities of the German government 
as displayed by the German Ambassador immediately 
preceding the war. I purposely made a distinction 
between the German government and German diplo- 
macy, as I am under the impression that Herr von 
Tschirsky had taken various steps without being 
instructed so to do, and when I previously have alluded 
to the fact that not all the ambassadors made use of the 
language enjoined by their governments, I was allud- 
ing specially to Herr von Tschirsky, whose whole tem- 
perament and feelings led him to interfere in our affairs 
with a certain vehemence and not always in the mos-t 
tactful way, thus rousing the Monarchy out of its 

There is no doubt whatever that all Herr von Tschir- 
sky's private speeches at this time were attuned to the 
tone of ''Now or Never," and it is certain that the 
German Ambassador declared his opinion to be ''that 
at the present moment Germany was prepared to sup- 
port our point of view with all her moral and military 
power, but whether this would prove to be the case in 
futtu-e if we accepted the Serbian rebuff appears to me 
doubtful." I believe that Tschirsky in particular was 
firmly persuaded that in the very near future Germany 
would have to go through a war against France and 
Russia, and he considered that the year 1914 would be 
more favorable than a later date. For this reason, 
because first of all he did not believe in the fighting 
capacity of either Russia or France, and secondly 
because — and this is a very important point — he was 
convinced that he could bring the Monarchy into this 
war ; while it appeared doubtful to him that the aged 
and peace-loving Emperor Francis Joseph would draw 


the sword for Germany on any other occasion where the 
action would center less round him, he wished to make 
use of the Serbian episode so as to be sure of Austria- 
Hungary in the deciding struggle. That, however, was 
his policy, and not Bethmann's. 

This, I repeat, is the impression produced on me by 
lengthy conversations with Count Tisza — impressions 
which have been confirmed from other sources. I am 
persuaded, however, that Tschirsky, in behaving as he 
did, widely overstretched his prescribed sphere of 
activity. Iswolsky was not the only one of his kind. I 
conclude this to be so, since Tschirsky, as intimated in 
a former despatch, was never in a position to make an 
official declaration urging for war, but appears only to 
have spoken after the manner of diplomatic repre- 
sentatives when anxious to adapt the policy of their 
government to their own point of view. Undoubtedly 
Tschirsky transmitted his instructions correctly and 
loyally, nor did he keep back or secrete anything. An 
ambassador attains more or less according to the energy 
expended by him in carrying out the instructions of his 
government; and the private opinion of the ambas- 
sador is, under certain circumstances, not easy to dis- 
tinguish from his official one. At all events, the latter 
will be influenced by the former, and Tschirsky's pri- 
vate opinion aimed at a more vigorous policy. 

In complete ignorance of impending events, I had 
arrived at Steiermark a few days before the ultimatum 
in order to establish my family there for the summer. 
While there I received a message from Berchtold to 
return to my post as quickly as possible. I obeyed at 
once, but before leaving had one more audience with 
the Emperor Francis Joseph at Ischl. I found the 
Emperor extremely depressed.^ He alluded qu i te briefly 
to the coming events, and merely asked me if, in case 
Qf a war, I could guarantee Rumania's neutrality. I 


answered in the affirmative, so long as King Carol was 
alive ; beyond that any guaranty was impossible. 


Certain extremely important details relating to the 
time immediately preceding the outbreak of war can 
only be attributed to the influence of the group repre- 
sented by Tschirsky. It is incomprehensible why we 
granted to our then allies, Italy and Rumania, facilities 
for playing the part of seceders by presenting them with 
an ultimatum before action was completed, instead of 
winning them over and involving them also. 

I am no accurate judge of the events in Rome, but 
King Carol in Rumania had certainly tried everything 
to induce Serbia to yield. In all probability he would 
not have succeeded, as Serbia had no idea of renounc- 
ing her plans for a Greater Serbia; but presumably 
an anxious feeling would have arisen between Bukha- 
rest and Belgrade, which would strongly have influenced 
further Rumanian policy in our favor. 

Bukharest has made enormous capital out of the 
diplomatic proceedings. 

Before the first decisive Cabinet Council Baron 
Fasciotti, the Italian Ambassador, harangued all the 
members in this spirit, and declared that the situation 
in Rumania and Italy was similar, and in each case 
there was no reason for co-operation, as neither Rome 
not Bukharest had previously come to an under- 
standing regarding the ultimatum. His efforts were 
crowned with success. 

On August I, 1 914, I sent the following telegram to 
Berchtold : 

The Prime Minister has just notified me the result of the Cabinet 
Council. After a warm appeal from the King to bring the treaty 


into force, the Cabinet Council, with one exception, declared that 
no party could undertake the responsibility of such action. 

The Cabinet Council has resolved that as Rumania was neither 
notified nor consulted concerning the Austro-Eungarian action in 
Belgrade no casus foederis exists. The Cabinet Council further 
resolved that military preparations for the safety of the frontier be 
undertaken, which would be an advantage for the Austro-Hungarian 
Monarchy, as several hundred miles of its frontiers would thereby 
be covered. 

The Prime IMinister added that he had already given orders to 
strengthen all military posts, after which by degrees general mobiliz- 
ation would follow. 

The government intends only to publish a short communique 
relating to the military measures taken for the safety of the country. 

Secondly, it appears incomprehensible why the 
ultimatum was drawn up as it was. It was not so 
much a manifestation of Berchtold's wish for war as of 
other influences, above all that of Tschirsky. In 1870 
Bismarck also desired war, but the Ems telegram was 
of quite a different character. 

In the present case it appears incomprehensible why 
a note should have been selected which by its wording 
gave umbrage to many who hitherto were favorably 
disposed toward us. 

Had we, before the ultimatum and after the assassina- 
tion, secretly and confidentially furnished proofs to the 
great Powers who were not inimical to us, and espe- 
cially to England, that trouble was impending over a 
political murder staged at Belgrade, we should have 
evoked a very different frame of mind in those govern- 
ments. Instead, we flung the ultimatum at them and 
at the whole of Europe. 

It was feared probably at the Ballplatz that any 
communication to the Powers would result in their 
intervention in the form of a new conference of ambas- 
sadors, and that stagnation would ensue. But in the 
year 19 14 the case was very different from former days 


—before the ultimatum right was so undoubtedly on 
our side. 

At all events, the Tschirsky group dreaded such an 
insipid solution, and had insisted, therefore, on drastic 
action. In 1 8 70 Bismarck was the attacking party, and 
he succeeded in interchanging the parts. We also 
succeeded, but in an^opposite sense. 


Then came our greatest disaster — the German entry 
into Belgium. 

Had England remained neutral we should not have 
lost the war. In his book, Ursachen und Ausbruck des 
Krieges, page 172, Jagow tells howon August 4th, toward 
the close of the Reichstag session, the EngHsh Ambas- 
sador appeared there and again asked whether Ger- 
many would respect Belgium's neutrality. At that 
time German troops were already on Belgian soil. On 
hearing that, the Ambassador retired, but, returning 
in a few hours, demanded a declaration, to be handed 
in before midnight, that the further advance of the Ger- 
man troops into Belgium would cease, otherwise he was 
instructed to ask for his passport and England would 
then protect Belgium. Germany refused, and the 
consequence was a declaration of war by England. 

That England on the same day sent word to Belgium 
that she would resist with her utmost strength any 
violation of her neutrality is fully in accordance with 
the steps taken at Berlin by the EngHsh Ambassador. 

Two days before, on August 2d, the English Cabi- 
net certainly gave France the assurance that, in ad- 
dition to the protection of Belgian neutrality, she had 
demanded that there should be no naval action against 
France. The contradiction between both points of 
view is clearly visible. It appears to me, however, that 


the only explanation is that on August 4th England no 
longer adhered to her standpoint of August 2d, for 
the German acceptance of the English ultimatum 
on the evening of August 4th had wrested from 
England the moral possibiHty of making further 
claims. If England, on August 4th, had sought a pre- 
text for war, she would have put forward, besides the 
Belgian demand, also that referring to the abstention 
from naval action. But she did not do so, and con- 
fined her ultimatum to the Belgian question, thereby 
t^n'ng her own hands in the event of Germany accepting 
the ultimatum. On the night of August 4th, between the 
hours of nine and midnight, the decision as to whether 
England would remain neutral or no lay with Germany. 

Germany kept to her resolve to violate Belgian 
neutrahty in spite of the certainty of the English 
declaration of war resulting therefrom. That was the 
first fateful victory of the militarists over the diplomats 
in this war. The former were naturally the motive 

The German military plan was to overrun France 
and then make a furious onslaught on Russia. This 
plan was shattered on the Marne. 

In more respects than one, German policy foundered 
on the heritage left by Bismarck. Not only was the 
conquest of Alsace-Lorraine a lasting obstacle to 
friendly relations with France, perpetually forcing the 
latter into the arms of every anti-German coalition, but 
Bismarck's heritage became Germany's curse, because 
the Germans, though desirous of following in his foot- 
steps, had no one sufficiently competent to lead them 

Bismarck created the German Empire out of Diippel, 
Koniggratz, and Sedan. His poHcy was one of "blood 
and iron"— and for fifty years that poHcy of violence 
and violent means had been ingrained in the mind of 


every German school-boy as the gospel of diplomatic 
art — but Bismarck was not able to bequeath to the 
German people his genial efficiency, wisdom, and 
prudence in the use of his violent means. Bismarck 
carefully prepared the wars of 1866 and 1870, and 
struck when he held good cards in his hands. The 
Germany of W^illiam II had no desire for war, but one 
day plunged headlong into it, and during the first week 
had already created political situations which were 
beyond her power to cope with. Belgium and Luxem- 
burg were treated on the Bismarckian principle of 
"might before right," and the world rose against 
Germany. I say world, because England's power 
extended over the world. 

At the beginning of the war England stood at ** order 
arms." It would have been entirely true to her tradi- 
tional policy to allow Germany to fight against France 
and Russia and mutually weaken one another, then at a 
given moment to intervene and enjoin peace. England 
was forced to join in by Germany threatening to 
establish herself in Belgium. How far the German 
invasion of Belgium can morally be extenuated owing 
to a French purpose to do likewise has still not been 
made clear — but this argument does not apply to 
Luxemburg, and the breach of right remains the same 
whether the country where it occurs be large or small. 

The invasion of Belgium and Luxemburg was a 
stroke of the Bismarckian policy of violence, not carried 
out by politicians, but by generals, though they were 
devoid of Bismarck's power of calculating the devas- 
tating consequences. 

Later on, during the course of the war, the German 
Supreme Command made repeated use of violent means, 
which were more detrimental than useful to us, though 
subsequently these means were morally justifiable 
and comprehensible; in fact, were directly forced on 


us, seeing that Germany was fighting for her existence, 
and her adversaries, who would not come to an under- 
standing, left her no choice of means. The use of 
noxious gas, aerial attacks on open towns, and the U- 
boat war were means used in desperation against a 
merciless enemy, who left women and children to die 
of starvation and declared day by day that Germany 
must be annihilated. 

When war was declared, that murderous element was 
lacking, and it was only the entry into neutral territory 
that fostered an atmosphere of such terrible hatred and 
vengeance and stamped the struggle as a war of anni- 

England's policy concerning Napoleon III had been 
also more of a diplomatic than a military nature, and 
everything tends to show that in the present case 
England originally had no intention of joining in the 
conflagration, but was content to see Germany weak- 
ened by her own confederates. 

So far as I am in a position to review the situation 
no blame for the wrongly estimated English attitude 
can be attached to our ambassadors in London. Their 
predictions and warnings were correct, and the final 
decision respecting the previously mentioned English 
ultimatum was taken in Berlin and not in London. 
Moreover, the German Foreign Office w^ould never 
voluntarily have consented to the act of violence, 
but the military party, who cared neither for diplo- 
matic reports nor political complications, carried every- 
thing before them. 

It will always be particularly difficult in a war to 
define the limits of miHtary and poHtical spheres of 
action. The activities of both encroach to so great an 
extent on each other as to form one whole, and very 
naturally in a war precedence is given to military needs. 
Nevertheless, the complete displacement of politicians 


into subordinate positions which was effected in Ger- 
many and thereby made manifest the fact that the 
German Supreme MiHtary Command had possessed 
itself of all state power of command, was a misfortune. 
Had the politicians at Berlin obtained a hearing there 
would never have been any invasion of Belgium, nor 
yet the ruthless U-boat war, the abstention from which 
would in both cases have saved the life of the Central 

From the very first day the Emperor William was as 
a prisoner in the hands of his generals. 

The blind faith in the invincibility of the army was, 
like so much else, an heirloom from Bismarck, and the 
** Prussian lieutenant, inimitable save in Germany," 
became her doom. The entire German people believed 
in victory and in an Emperor who flung himself into the 
arms of his generals and took upon himself a responsi- 
bility far surpassing the normal limit of what was bear- 
able. Thus the Emperor William allowed his generals 
full liberty of action, and, to begin with, their tactics 
seemed to be successful. The first battle of the Marne 
was a godsend for the Entente in their direst need. 
Again, later, when the war long since had assumed a 
totally different character, when the troops were made 
stationary by the war of position and fresh enemies 
were constantly rising up against us, when Italy, 
Rumania, and finally America appeared on the scene, 
then did the German generals achieve miracles of 
strategy. Hindenburg and Ludendorff became gods 
in the eyes of the German people; the whole of Ger- 
many looked up to them and hoped for victory through 
them alone. They were more powerful than the 
Emperor, and he, therefore, less than ever in a position 
to oppose them. 

Both the generals drew the well-nigh unlimited meas- 
iire of their power direct from the Entente, for the 


latter left the Germans in no doubt that they either 
must conquer or die. The terrified and suffering 
people clung, therefore, to those who alone could give 
them victory. 

Anglo- German competition, the increasing deca- 
dence of the Monarchy, and the consequent growing lust 
of conquest evinced by our neighbors had prepared the 
soil for war. Serbia, by the assassination, brought 
about an acute state of tension, and Russia profited 
thereby to fling herself on the Central Powers. 

That appears to me to be briefly an objective history 
of the beginning of the war. Faults, errors, and 
omissions from the most varied sources may occur in it, 
but can neither alter nor affect the real nature of the 

The victorious Entente gives a different interpreta- 
tion of it. She maintains that Germany let loose the 
war, and the terrible peace of Versailles is the product 
of that conception, for it serves as punishment. 

A neutral court of justice, as proposed by Germany, 
was refused. Her own witnesses and her own judges 
suffice for her. She is judge and prosecutor combined 
in one person. In Doctor Bauer, the German-Austrian 
Secretary of State, she has certainly secured an impor- 
tant witness for her view of the case. In the winter 
of 191 8 the latter openly declared that *' three Austro- 
Htmgarian counts and one general had started the 

Were that true, then Germany would also have to 
bear a vast amount of blame. For the four "guilty 
ones" could not have incited to war without being 
sure of having Germany at their back, and, were it true, 

* Supposed to be the Counts Berchtold, Tisza, and Stuergkh, and 
Gen. Conrad von Hohendorf. 


there could only have been a question of some plot laid 
by the Austro-Hungarian and the German govern- 
ments, in which case Germany, being the vastly 
superior military element, would undoubtedly have 
assumed the role of leader. 

Bauer's statement shows that they who inflicted the 
punitive peace were right. 


While the war was going on, a separate peace on our 
side that would have delivered up Germany would have 
been treachery. But had attempts at peace failed 
owing to the claims put forward by Germany, we 
should have been morally justified in breaking away 
from them, as we were united together in a war of 
defense and not in a war of conquest. Although the 
German military party both dreamed and talked 
incessantly of conquest, which doubtless gave rise 
to a misunderstanding of the situation, that was by 
no means the exclusive reason why peace could not be 
attained. It simply was because on no consideration 
could the Entente be induced to pardon Germany. I 
have already mentioned this in my speech of December 
II, i9i8,Mn which I discoursed on politics in the World 
AVar: ''Ludendorff is exactly like the statesmen of 
France and England. None of them wishes to com- 
promise, they only look for victory; in that respect 
there is no difference between them." As long as I was 
in office the Entente would never come to an agreement 
with Germany inter pares, thereby directly forcing us to 
assume the part of a war of defense. Had we suc- 
ceeded in what we so often attempted to do, namely, to 
make the Entente pronounce the saving word; and 

iSee AoDendix. 


had we ever been able to make the Entente state that it 
was ready to conclude a status quo peace with Germany, 
we would have been relieved of our moral obligations. 
Against this may be quoted : ''Salus rei publicas supreme 
lex'' — in order to save the Monarchy Germany would 
have to be given up, and therefore the other question 
must be inquired into as to whether the ' * physical pos- 
sibility" of a separate peace really did exist. I also 
mentioned this matter in the aforesaid speech, and 
expressly stated then, and withdraw nothing, that after 
the entry of England, then of Italy, Rumania, and 
finally of America into the war, I considered a victory 
peace on our side to be a Utopian idea. " But up to the 
last moment of my official activities I cherished the 
hope of a peace of understanding from month to month, 
from week to week, even from day to day, and believed 
that the possibility would arise of obtaining such a 
peace of understanding, however great the sacrifices. 
Just as little as anyone else could I foresee the end which 
practically has arrived, nor yet the present state of 
affairs. A catastrophe of such magnitude and such 
dimensions was never what I feared. This is confirmed 
in the published report of my aforesaid speech, sent by 
me to the Emperor Karl in 191 7 and reprinted later,' 
where I say : "A victory peace is out of the question ; 
we are therefore compelled to effect a peace with sacri- 
fice." The Imperial offer to cede Galicia to Poland, 
and, indirectly, to Germany, arose out of this train 
of thought, as did all the peace proposals to the Entente, 
which always clearly intimated that we were ready for 
endurable sacrifices. 

It had always been oovious that the Entente would 
tear the Monarchy in shreds, both in the event of a 
peace of understanding and of a separate peace. It 

1 See Appendix. 


was quite in keeping with the terms of the Treaty of 
London of April 26, 191 5. 

The resolutions passed at that Congress, which pre- 
pared for Italy's entry into the war, determined the 
further course of the war, for they included the division 
of the Monarchy, and forced us, therefore, into a desper- 
ate war of defense. I believe that London and Paris, 
at times when the fortune of war was on our side, both 
regretted the resolutions that had been adopted, as 
they prevented the dwellers on both the Seine and the 
Thames from making any temporarily desired advances 
to us. 

As far back as 191 5 we received vague news of the 
contents of this strictly secret London Agreement ; but 
only in February, 191 7, did we obtain the authentic 
whole, when the Russian revolutionary government 
published a protocol referring to it, which subsequently 
was reproduced in our papers. 

I add this protocol to the appendix of the book,^ as, 
in spite of its being so eminently important, it has not 
received adequate attention on the part of the public. 

According to the settlements, which were binding 
for the four states — England, France, Russia, and 
Italy — the last-named was awarded the Trentino, the 
whole of South Tyrol as far as the Brenner Pass, Trieste, 
Goritz, Gradisca, the w^hole of I stria, with a number of 
islands, also Dalmatia. 

In the course of the war the Entente had further 
made binding promises to the Rumanians and Serbians, 
hence the need for the dissolution of the Monarchy. 

Having made these statements, I wish to explain why 
a separate peace was a sheer impossibility for us. In 
other words, what were the reasons that prevented us 
from ending the war and becoming neutral — reasons 

1 See Appendix. 


which only left one possibiHty open to us: to change 
our adversary, and instead of fighting the Entente, 
together with Germany, to join the Entente and with it 
fight against Germany? It must, above all, be kept 
in mind that up to the last days that I held office the 
eastern front was manned by Austro-Hungarian and 
German troops all mixed together, and this entire army 
was under the Imperial German command. We had 
no army of our own in the east — not in the true sense of 
the word, as it had been merged into the German army. 
That was a consequence of our military inferiority. 
Again and again we resorted to German aid. We 
called repeatedly for help in Serbia, Rumania, Russia, 
and Italy, and were compelled to purchase it by giving 
up certain things. Our notorious inferiority was only 
in very sHght degree the fault of the individual soldier ; 
rather did it emanate from the general state of Austro- 
Hungarian affairs. We entered the war badly equipped 
and sadly lacking in artillery ; the various Ministers of 
War and the Parliaments were to blame in that respect. 
The Hungarian Parliament neglected the army for 
years because their national claims were not attended to, 
and in Austria the Social Democrats had always been 
opposed to any measures of defense, scenting therein 
plans for attack and not defense. 

Our General Staff was in part very bad. There were, 
of course, exceptions, but they only prove the rule. 
What was chiefly wanting was contact with the troops. 
These gentlemen sat with their backs turned and gave 
their orders. Hardly ever did they see the men at the 
front or where the bullets whistled. During the war 
the troops learned to hate the General Staff. It was 
very different in the German army. The German Gen- 
eral Staffs exacted much, but they also achieved much; 
above all, they exposed themselves freely and set an 
example. Ludendorff, sword in hand, took Liege, 


accompanied by a couple of men! In Austria arch- 
dukes were put into leading posts for which they were 
quite unsuited. Some of them were utterly incompe- 
tent; the Archdukes Friedrich, Eugen, and Joseph 
formed three exceptions. The first of these in par- 
ticular very rightly looked upon his post not as that of a 
leader of operations, but as a connecting link between 
us and Germany, and between the army and the Em- 
peror Francis Joseph. He acted always correctly and 
with eminent tact, and overcame many difficulties. 
What was left of our independence was lost after Luck. 

To return, therefore, to the plan developed above : a 
separate peace that would have contained an order for 
our troops on the eastern front to lay down their arms 
or to march back would immediately have led to con- 
flict at the front. Following on the violent opposition 
that such an order would naturally have aroused in the 
German leaders, orders from Vienna and counter-orders 
from Berlin would have led to a state of complete dis- 
organization, even to anarchy. Humanly speaking, it 
was out of the question to look for a peaceful and blood- 
less unravelment at the front. I state this in order to 
explain my firm conviction that the idea that such a 
parting of the two armies could have been carried out 
in mutual agreement is based on utterly erroneous 
premises, and also to prove that we have here the first 
factor showing that we would not have ended the war 
by a separate peace, but would, on the contrary, have 
been entangled in a new one. 

But what would have been enacted at the front 
would also, and in aggravated fashion, have been 
repeated throughout the entire country — a civil war 
would have been inevitable. 

I must here explain a second misunderstanding, 
resulting also from my speech of December nth, which 
is due to my statement that ''if we came out Germany 


could not carry on the war.'' I admit that this state- 
ment is not clearly expressed, and was interpreted as 
though I had intended to say that if we came out the 
immediate collapse of Germany was a foregone con- 
clusion. I did not intend to say that, nor did I say or 
mean it. I meant to say that our secession from Ger- 
many would render impossible a victorious ending of 
the war, or even a lasting successful continuance of the 
war ; that Germany through this would be faced by the 
alternative of either submitting to the dictates of the 
Entente or of bringing up her supremest fighting powers 
and suppressing the Monarchy, preparing for her the 
same fate as Rumania met with. I meant to say that 
Austria-Hungary, if she allowed the Entente troops to 
enter, would prove such a terrible danger to Germany 
that she would be compelled to use every means to 
forestall us and paralyze the move. Whoever imagines 
that the German military leaders would not have seized 
the latter eventuality knows them but badly, and has a 
poor opinion of their spirit. In order to be able to 
form an objective judgment of this train of thought one 
should be able to enter into the spirit of the situation. 
In April, 19 16, when I sent in my resignation for other 
reasons, Germany's confidence in victory was stronger 
than ever. The eastern front was free; Russia and 
Rumania were out of action. The troops were bound 
westward, and no one who knew the situation as it was 
then can repudiate my assertion that the German mili- 
tary leaders beUeved themselves then to be nearer than 
ever to a victory peace; that they were persuaded they 
would take both Paris and Calais and force the Entente 
to its knees. It is out of the question that at such a 
moment and under such conditions they could have 
rephed to the falling away of Austria-Hungary other- 
wise than by violence. 

All who will not admit the argument, I would refer to 


a fact which it would be difficult to evade. Six months 
afterward, when there was already clear evidence of the 
German collapse, when Andrassy declared a separate 
peace, the Germans, as a matter of fact, threw troops into 
the Tyrol. If they, when utterly exhausted, defeated, 
and ruined, with revolution at their back, still held 
firmly to this decision and endeavored to make a battle- 
field on Austrian territory, how much more would they 
have done that six months earlier, when they still stood 
full of proud defiance and their generals dreamed of 
victory and triumph? What I, secondly, also would 
maintain is that the immediate consequence of a 
separate peace would have been the conversion of 
Austria-Hungary into a theater of war. The Tyrol, as 
well as Bohemia, would have become fields of battle. 

If it be maintained now that the great exhaustion 
from the war that prevailed throughout the Monarchy 
before April, 191 7, had caused the entire population 
of the former Monarchy to rally round the Minister 
who had concluded the separate peace, it is a conscious 
or unconscious untruth. Certainly the Czechs were 
decidedly against Germany, and it would not have been 
reasons of political aUiance that would have prevented 
them from agreeing. But I would like to know what 
the Czech people would have said if Bohemia had been 
turned into a theater of war and exposed to all the 
sufferings endured by this and all other peoples, and 
when to it had been added the devastation of the father- 
land, for, let there be no doubt about it, the troops 
advancing with flying colors from Saxony would have 
made their way to Prague and penetrated even farther. 
We had no military forces in Bohemia; we should not 
have been able to check the advance, and quicker than 
either we or the Entente could have sent troops worth 
mentioning to Bohemia, the Germans, drawing troops 
from their well-nigh inexhaustible reserves, would have 


marched either against us or against the Entente on 
our territory. The German-Austrian pubhc would 
not have been in agreement with such a Minister; but 
the German NationaHsts and the German bourgeoisie 
have no say in the matter. 

On October 28th the German Nationalists published 
their own particular point of view in the following 
manner : 

The members of the German Nationalist parties were highly- 
indignant at the way in which Count Andrassy answered Wilson's 
note. Count Andrassy came from Hungary, and neither came to 
any agreement with the Imperial German government nor with the 
representatives of the Executive Committee before drawing up the 
note. Although the peace negotiations were most warmly welcomed 
and considered most necessary, still the one-sided action of Count 
Andrassy in despatching the note to Wilson without previous 
arrangement with the German Empire has roused the greatest indig- 
nation in the German parties. A few days ago a delegation from 
the German Executive Committee was in BerHn and was favorably 
received by the German Imperial government in the matter of pro- 
viding for German-Austria. Although German soldiers fought by 
the side of ours in the Alps and the Carpathians, the alliance has now 
been violated by this effort to approach Wilson without the consent 
of the German Empire, as is expressly stated in the note. Besides 
which, no previous agreement with the representatives of the Ger- 
man Executive Committee was sought for. They were ignored and 
the answer was sent to Wilson. The German Nationalist parties 
strongly protest against such an unqualifiahle act and will insist in 
the German Executive Committee that German- Austria's right of 
self-determination be unconditionally upheld and peace be secured 
in concert with the German Empire. 

Neither would the German-Austrian Social Demo- 
crats have been a party to such a movement. 

A conscious and intended misrepresentation of fact 
lies before us if it be maintained to-day that either the 
National Assembly or the Austrian Social Democrats 
would have approved of and supported such policy. I 
again have in mind the Andrassy days. 


On October 30th the National Assembly took up its 
position for action. Doctor Sylvester drew up the 
report and pointed out the following: 

It was, however, neither necessary nor desirable to make the 
attempt in such a way as to create an incurable rupture between 
German-Austria and the German Empire that would endanger the 
future of our people. The German-Austrian National Assembly 
asserts that the note of October 27th from the Royal and Imperial 
Minister for Foreign Affairs was drawn up and despatched to 
President Wilson without in any way coming to an agreement with 
the representatives of the German- Austrian people. The National 
Assembly protests all the more insistently against this proceeding 
as the nation to which the present Minister for Foreign Affairs 
belongs has expressly refused any joint dealings. The National 
Assembly states that it and its organs alone have the right to repre- 
sent the German-Austrian people in all matters relating to foreign 
affairs and particularly in all peace negotiations. 

The protest met with no opposition in the National 

Afterward the chairman, Doctor Ellenbogen, the 
Social Democrat, spoke as follows: 

Instead of now telling the Geiman Emperor that his remaining 
in office is the greatest obstacle to peace [loud applause from the 
Social Democrats], and if there ever were an object in Curtius's 
famous leap, it would be comprehensible now were the German 
Emperor to copy it to save his people, this coalition now seizes the 
present moment to break away from Germany and in doing so 
attacks German democracy in the rear. Those gentlemen arrived 
too late to gain any profit from the peace. What now remains is 
the bare and shameful breach of faith, the thanks of the House of 
Austria, so styled by a celebrated German poet. [Applause from the 
Social Democrats and the German Radicals.] 

It was the attack on the separate peace that furnished 
the exceptional opportunity for Social Democrats and 
German Radicals to unite in common applause, prob- 
ably the first instance of such a thing in all these years 
of war. 


If that could happen at a moment when it already was 
obvious that there was no longer a possibility of making 
a peace of understanding together with Germany — 
what would have happened, I ask, at a time when this 
was by no means so clear to the great majority of the 
population ; at a time when it was still far from certain, 
or, at least, not to be proved mathematically, that we 
in time and together with Germany might still be able 
to conclude a peace of understanding? Disbandment 
at the front, where all would be fighting against all, civil 
war in the interior, such would have been the result of a 
separate peace. And all that in order finally to impose 
on us the resolutions passed in London! For never — • 
as I shall presently show — had the Entente given up its 
decision, as it was bound to Italy, and Italy would 
allow of no change. Such a policy would have been as 
suicide from the sheer fear of death. 

In 191 7 I once discussed the whole question with the 
late Dr. Victor Adler, and pointed out to him the proba- 
bilities ensuing from a separate peace. 

Doctor Adler repHed: ''For God's sake, do not 
plunge us into a war with Germany!" After the entry 
of Bavarian troops into the Tyrol (Adler was then a 
secretary in the Foreign Affairs Department) he re- 
minded me of our conversation, and added: ''The 
catastrophe we spoke of then has arrived. The Tyrol 
will become a theater of war." 

Every one in Austria wished for peace. No one 
wanted a new war — and a separate peace would have 
brought about, not peace, but a new war with Germany. 

In Hungary, Stephen Tisza ruled with practically 
unlimited powers; he was far more powerful than the 
entire Wekerle Ministry put together. As apphed to 
Hungary, a separate peace would also have meant the 
carrying out of the Entente aims; that is, the loss of the 
largest and richest territories in the north and south of 


Czecho-Slovakia, Rumania, and Serbia. Is there any- 
one who can honestly maintain that the Hungarians in 
191 7 would have agreed to these sacrifices without 
putting up the bitterest resistance? Every one who 
knows the circumstances must admit that in this case 
Tisza would have had the whole of Hungary behind him 
in a fierce attack on Vienna. Soon after I took office 
I had a long and very serious conversation with him on 
the German and the peace questions. Tisza pointed 
out that the Germans were difficult to deal with; they 
were arrogant and despotic ; yet without them we could 
not bring the war to an end. The proposal to cede 
Hungarian territory (Transylvania) and also the plan 
to enforce an internal Hungarian reform in favor of the 
subject nationaHties were matters that were not capable 
of discussion. The congress in London in 191 5 had 
adopted resolutions that were quite mad and never 
could be realized, and the desire for destruction pre- 
vailing in the Entente could be suppressed only by 
force. In all circumstances, we must keep our place 
by the side of Germany. In Hungary are many differ- 
ent currents of feeling — but the moment that Vienna 
prepared to sacrifice any part of Hungary the whole 
country would rise as one man against such action. In 
that respect there was no difference between him — 
Tisza — and Karolyi. Tisza alluded to Karolyi's atti- 
tude of Parliament, and said that if peace was to be 
made behind Hungary's back she would separate from 
Austria and act independently. 

I replied that there was no question either of separat- 
ing from Germany or of ceding any Hungarian territory, 
but that we must be quite clear as to what we had to 
guard should we be carried farther through the German 
lust of conquest. 

Thereupon Tisza pointed out that the situation was 
different. It was not known for certain what had been 


determined at the conference in London (the protocol 
had not then been pubhshed), but that Hungarian 
territory was promised to Rumania was just as certain 
as that the Entente was planning to intervene in Hun- 
garian internal affairs, and both contingencies were 
equally unacceptable. Were the Entente to give Hun- 
gary a guaranty for the status quo ante and to desist 
from any internal interference, it would alter the situa- 
tion. Until then Tisza must declare against any 
attempt at peace. 

The conversation as it proceeded became more ani- 
mated, owing particularly to my accusing him of view- 
ing all politics from a Hungarian point of view, which he 
did not deny, though he maintained that the dispute 
was a mere platonic one, as the Entente peace terms 
appeared to be such that Austria would be left with 
much less than Hungary. I was also first to state the 
terms under which we could make peace; then only 
would it be seen whether extreme pressure brought to 
bear on Germany were advisable or not. There was no 
sense in Germany's advocating peace if she intended to 
continue fighting. For Germany was fighting, above 
all, for the integrity of the Monarchy, which would be 
lost the moment Germany laid down her arms. What- 
ever German politicians and generals said was of little 
consequence. As long as England remained bent on 
satisfying her allies with our territory, Germany was 
the only protection against these plans. 

Tisza had no desire for conquest beyond a frontier 
protection from Rumania, and he was decidedly opposed 
to the dismemberment of new states (Poland); that 
would be to weaken, not to strengthen, Hungary. 

After a lengthy discussion we agreed to bind our- 
selves to the following policy : 

(i) So long as the determination made at the conference in 
London — i.e.. the destruction of the Monarchy— continues 


to be the Entente's objective, we must fight on in the cer- 
tain hope of crushing that spirit of destruction. 

(2) But as our war is purely a defensive war, it will on no account 
be carried on for purposes of conquest. 

'(3) Any semblance of the weakening of our allied relations must 
be avoided. 

(4) No concession of Hungarian territory may take place without 
the knowledge of the Prime Minister. 

'(5) Should the Austrian IMinistry agree with the Foreign ]\Iin- 
ister respecting a cession of Austrian territory, the Hun- 
garian Prime Minister will naturally acquiesce. 

When the conference in London and the destruction 
of the Monarchy came into question, Tisza was entirely 
in the right, and that he otherwise to the end adhered to 
his standpoint is proved on the occasion of his last visit 
to the Southern Slavs, which he undertook at the request 
of the Emperor immediately before the collapse, and 
where he in the most marked manner showed himself to 
be opposed to the aspirations of the Southern Slavs. 

Whoever attempts to judge in objective fashion must 
not, when looking back from to-day, relegate all that 
has since happened to former discernible facts, but 
should consider that, in spite of all pessimism and all 
fears, the hopes of a reasonable peace of understanding, 
even though involving sacrifices, still existed, and that 
it was impossible to plunge the Monarchy in a catas- 
trophe at once for fear of its coming later. 

If the situation is described to-day as though the 
inhabitants of the Monarchy, and especially the Social 
Democrats, were favorably disposed for any eventual- 
ity, even for a separate peace, I must again most em- 
phatically repudiate it. I bear in mind that Social 
Democracy without doubt was the party most strongly 
in favor of peace, and also that Social Democracy in 
Germany, as here with us, repeatedly stated that there 
were certain limits to its desire for peace. The German 
Social Democrats never agreed that Alsace-Lorraine 


ought to be given up, and never have our Social Demo- 
crats voted for ceding Trieste, Bozen, and Meran. 
This would in any case have been the price of peace — 
and also the price of a separate peace — for, as I have 
already pointed out, at the conference in London, 
which dates back to 1915, binding obligations had been 
entered into for the partition of the Monarchy, while 
all that had been promised to Italy. 

The fall of the Monarchy was quite inevitable, 
whether through the separation from Germany or 
through the vacillation in the Entente ranks — for the 
claims of the Italians, the Rumanians, the Serbians, 
and the Czechs had all been granted. In any case the 
Monarchy would have fallen and German-Austria have 
arisen as she has done now; and I doubt whether the 
part played by that country during the proceedings 
would have recommended it to the special protection of 
the Entente. It is a very great mistake, whether con- 
scious or unconscious, to believe and to maintain that 
the population of German-Austria, and especially the 
present leaders of Social Democracy, are devoid of any 
strong national feeling. I refer to the part played by 
the Austrian Social Democracy in the question of union. 
It was the motive power in the union with Germany, 
and the papers repeated daily that no material advan- 
tages which the Entente could offer to Austria could 
alter the decision. How, therefore, can this same 
Social Democracy, whose entire political views and aims 
are subordinate to the desire for a union with Germany 
— how can this Social Democracy demand a policy 
which, without doubt, must lead not only to a separa- 
tion from Germany, but to a fratricidal war with the 
German nation? And why condemn the upholding of 
allied relations when Andrassy Was abused for doing the 
opposite ? 

But what was the situation in March, 191 8, shortly 


before my resignation? Germany stood at the height 
of her success. I do not pretend to say that her success 
was real. In this connection that is of no moment; 
but the Germans were persuaded that they were quite 
near a victorious end, that after leaving the eastern 
front they would throw themselves on to the western 
front, and that the war would end before America had 
time to come in. Their reckoning was at fault, as we 
all know to-day. But for the German generals the will 
to victory was the leading spirit, and all decisions 
arrived at by Germany against the defection of Austria- 
Hungary proceeded from that dominant influence. 

As already mentioned, I stated in my speech of 
December nth, on foreign policy, that neither the 
Entente nor Germany would conclude a peace of renun- 
ciation. Since then I have had opportunity to speak 
with several men of the Entente, and, consequent on 
the views that I obtained, I feel I must formulate my 
previous opinion in still stronger terms. I came to the 
firm conclusion that the Entente — England above all — 
from the summer of 191 7, at any rate, had formed an 
unbending resolve to shatter Germany. 

From that time onward England, with the obstinacy 
which is her chief characteristic, appears to have been 
determined not to treat with Germany any more, nor to 
sheathe her sword until Germany lay crushed to earth. 
It makes no difference in the matter that the German 
military party — though for other reasons — from a total 
misconception of their chances of victory, steadily 
refused a peace involving sacrifice at a time when it 
might have been possible. This is a historical fact, 
but as an upholder of truth I must distinctly state that 
I doubt whether concessions would have changed the 
fate of Germany. We could have gone over to the 
enemy — in 191 7 and also in 1918 ; we could have fought 
against Germany with the Entente on Austro-Hunga- 


rian soil, and would doubtless have hastened Germany's 
collapse; but the wounds which Austria-Hungary 
would have received in the fray would rot have been 
less serious than those from which she is now suffering ; 
she would have perished in the fight against Germany, as 
she has as good as perished in her fight allied with Ger- 

Austria-Hungary s watch had run down. Among the 
few statesmen who in 19 14 wished for war — like Tschir- 
sky, for instance — there can have been none who after 
a few months had not altered and regretted his views. 
They, too, had not thought of a world war. I believe 
to-day, nevertheless, that even without the war the fall 
of the Monarchy would have happened, and that the 
assassination in Serbia was the first sign. 

The Archduke Heir Apparent was the victim of 
Greater Serbia's aspirations; but these aspirations, 
which led to the breaking away of our Southern Slav 
provinces, would not have been suppressed, but, on the 
contrary, would have largely increased and asserted 
themselves, and would have strengthened the centrif- 
ugal tendencies of other peoples within the Monarchy. 

Lightning at night reveals the country for a second, 
and the same effect was produced by the shots fired at 
Sarajevo. It became obvious that the signal for the 
fall of the Monarchy had been given. The bells of 
Sarajevo, which began to toll half an hour after the 
murder, sounded the death knell of the Monarchy. 

The feeling among the Austrian people, and especially 
at Vienna, was very general that the outrage at Sarajevo 
was a matter of more importance than the murder of an 
Imperial prince and his wife, and that it was the alarm 
signal for the ruin of the Hapsburg Empire. 

I have been told that during the period between the 
assassination and the war warlike demonstrations 
were daily occurrences in the Viennese restaurants and 



people's parks; patriotic and anti-Serbian songs were 
sung, and Berchtold was scoffed at because he could not 
* ' exert himself to take any energetic steps. ' ' This must 
not be taken as an excuse for any eventual mistakes on 
the part of the leaders of the nation, for a leading states- 
man ought not to allow himself to be influenced by the 
man in the street. It is only to prove that the spirit 
developed in 1914 appears to have been very general. 
And it may perhaps be permitted to add this comment : 
how many of those who then clamored for war and 
revenge and demanded ** energy," would, now that the 
experiment has totally failed, severely criticize and con- 
demn Berchtold's ''criminal behavior"? 

It is, of course, impossible to say in what manner the 
fall of the Monarchy would have occurred had war 
been averted. Certainly in a less terrible fashion than 
was the case through the war. Probably much more 
slowly, and doubtless without dragging the whole 
world into the whirlpool. We were bound to die. We 
were at liberty to choose the manner of our death, and 
we chose the most terrible. 

Without knowing it, we lost our independence at the 
outbreak of war. We were transformed from a subject 
into an object. 

This unfortunate war once started, we were powerless 
to end it. At the conference in London the death 
sentence had been passed on the Empire of the Haps- 
burgs and a separate peace would have been no easier 
a form of death than that involved in holding out at 
the side of our allies. 



KONOPISCHT has become the cradle of manifold 
legends. The lord of the castle was the first victim 
of the terrible world conflagration, and the part that he. 
played before the war has been the subject of much and 
partly erroneous commentary. 

The Archduke and heir to the throne was a man of a 
very peculiar nature. The main feature of his char- 
acter was a great lack of balance. He knew no middle 
course and was just as eager to hate as to love. He was 
unbalanced in everything; he did nothing like other 
people, and what he did was done in superhuman 
dimensions. His passion for buying and collecting 
antiquities was proverbial and fabulous. A first-rate 
shot, sport was for him a question of murdering en 
masse, and the number of game shot by him reached 
hundreds of thousands. A few years before his death 
he shot his five thousandth stag. 

His ability as a good shot was phenomenal. When in 
India, during his voyage round the world, and while 
staying with a certain Maharajah, an Indian marks- 
man gave an exhibition of his skill. Coins were thrown 
into the air which the man hit ^ith bullets. The Arch- 
duke tried the same and beat the Indian. Once when I 
was staying with him at Eckartsau he made a coup 
double at a stag and a hare as they ran ; he had knocked 


over a fleeing stag, and when, startled by the shot, a 
hare jumped up, he killed it with the second bullet. 
He scorned all modern appUances for shooting, such as 
telescopes or automatic rifles; he invariably used a 
short double-barreled rifle, and his exceptionally keen 
sight rendered glasses unnecessary. 

The artistic work of laying out parks and gardens 
became in latter years his dominating passion. He 
knew every tree and every bush at Konopischt, and 
loved his flowers above everything. He was his own 
gardener. Every bed and every group was designed 
according to his exact orders. He knew the condi- 
tions essential to the life of each individual plant, the 
quality of the soil required ; and even the smallest spot 
to be laid out or altered was done according to his 
minute instructions. But here, too, everything was car- 
ried out on the same gigantic lines, and the sums spent 
on that park must have been enormous. Few people 
had the artistic knowledge possessed in many respects 
by the Archduke ; no dealer could palm off on him any 
modern article as an antique, and he had just as good 
taste as understanding. On the other hand, music to 
him was simply a disagreeable noise, and he had an 
unspeakable contempt for poets. He could not bear 
Wagner, and Goethe left him quite cold. His lack of 
any talent for languages was peculiar. He spoke 
French tolerably, but otherwise no other language, 
though he had a smattering of Itahan and Czech. For 
years — indeed, to the end of his life — he struggled with 
the greatest energy to learn Hungarian. He had a 
priest living permanently in the house to give him 
Hungarian lessons. This priest accompanied him on 
his travels, and at St. Moritz, for instance, Franz Fer- 
dinand had a Hungarian lesson every day; but, in 
spite of this, he continued to suffer from the feeling that 
he would never be able to learn the language, and he 


vented his annoyance at this on the entire Hungarian 
people. * ' Their very language makes me feel antipathy 
for them," was a remark I constantly heard him make. 
His judgment of people was not a well-balanced one; 
he could either love or hate, and, unfortunately, the 
number of those included in the latter category was 
considerably the greater. 

There is no doubt about it that there was a very 
hard strain in Franz Ferdinand's mentality, and those 
who only knew him slightly felt that this hardness of 
character was the most notable feature in him, and his 
great unpopularity can doubtless be attributed to this 
cause. The public never knew the splendid qualities 
of the Archduke, and misjudged him accordingly^ 

Apparently he was not always like that. He suf- 
fered in his youth from severe lung trouble, and for long 
was given up by the doctors. He often spoke to me 
of that time and all that he had gone through, and 
referred with intense bitterness to the people who were 
only waiting day by day to put him altogether on one 
side. As long as he was looked upon as the heir to the 
throne, and people reckoned on him for the future, he 
was the center of all possible attention; but when he 
fell ill and his case was considered hopeless, the world 
fluctuated from hour to hour and paid homage to his 
younger brother, Otto. I do not for a m.oment doubt 
that there was a great deal of truth in what the late 
Archduke told me; and no one knowing the ways of 
the world can deny the wretched, servile egotism that 
is almost always at the bottom of the homage paid to 
those in high places. More deeply than in the hearts 
of others was this resentment implanted in the heart of 
Franz Ferdinand, and he neverforgave the world what 
he suffered and went through in those distressful 
months. It was chiefly the ostensible vacillation of 
the then Minister for Foreign Affairs, Count Goluchow- 


ski, that had so deeply hurt the Archduke, who always 
imagined that Goluchowski was personally attached to 
him. According to Franz Ferdinand's account, Go- 
luchowsld is supposed to have said to the Emperor 
Francis Joseph that the Archduke Otto ought now to 
be given the retinue and household suitable for the 
heir to the throne, as he — Franz Ferdinand — "was in 
any case lost." It was not so much the fact as the 
manner in which Goluchowski tried "to bury him 
while still living " that vexed and hurt him whom a long 
illness had made irritable. But besides Goluchowski, 
there were numberless others whose behavior at that 
time he took greatly amiss, and his unparalleled con- 
tempt of the world, which, when I knew him, was one of 
his most characteristic features, appears — partly, at 
any rate — to date from his experiences during illness. 

In connection with pohtics, too, this bitterness exer- 
cised a lasting influence on his entire mental outlook. I 
have been told by an authentic witness that the Arch- 
duke, when suffering and combating his terrible disease, 
saw one day an article in a Hungarian paper which, in 
brutal and derisive tones, spoke of the Archduke's 
expectations of future government as laid aside, and 
gloated openly, with malicious dehght, over the prob- 
able event. The Archduke, who while reading the 
article had turned ashen gray with rage and indigna- 
tion, remained silent for a moment and then made the 
following characteristic remark: "Now I must get better. 
I shall live from now only for my health. I must get 
better in order to show them that their joy is prema- 
ture." And though this may not have been the only 
reason for his violent antipathy to everything Hun- 
garian, there is no doubt that the episode influenced 
his mind considerably. The Archduke was a "good 
hater"; he did not easily forget, and woe betide those 
upon whom he vented his hatred. On the other hand, 


though but few knew it, he had an uncommonly warm 
corner in his heart; he was an ideal husband, the best of 
fathers, and a faithful friend. But the number of 
those he despised was incomparably greater than those 
who gained his affection, and he himself was in no 
doubt whatever as to his being the most unpopular per- 
son in the Monarchy. But there was a certain grandeur 
in this very contempt of popularity. He never could 
bring himself to make any advances to newspapers or 
other organs that are in the habit of influencing public 
opinion either favorably or unfavorably. He was too 
proud to sue for popularity, and too great a despiser of 
men to attach any importance to their judgment. 

The Archduke's antipathy to Hungary runs like a 
scarlet thread through the political chain of his thoughts. 
I have been told that at the time when the Crown- 
Prince Rudolf was frequently in Hungary shooting, the 
Archduke was often with him, and that the Hungarian 
gentlemen took a pleasure in teasing and ridicuHng the 
young Archduke in the presence and to the delight of 
the considerably older Crown Prince. Ready as I am 
to beheve that the Crown-Prince Rudolf enjoyed the 
jokes — and little do I doubt that there were men there 
who would act in such fashion so as to curry favor with 
the Crown Prince — I still think that these unpleasant 
incidents in his youth weighed less in the balance with 
Franz Ferdinand than the already mentioned occur- 
rences during his illness. 

Apart from his personal antipathies, which he trans- 
ferred from a few Hungarians to the entire nation, 
there were also various far-reaching and well-founded 
political reasons which strengthened the Archduke in 
his antagonistic relations with Hungary. Franz Fer- 
dinand possessed an exceptionally fine political flair, 
and this enabled him to see that Hungarian poHcy was 
a vital danger to the existence of the whole Hapsburg 


Empire. His desire to overthrow the predominance of 
the Magyars and to help the nationahties to obtain 
their rights was ahvays in his thoughts, and influenced 
his judgment on all political questions. He was the 
steady representative of the Rumanians, the Slovaks, 
and other nationalities living in Hungary, and went so 
far in that respect that he would have treated every 
question at once from an anti-Magyar point of view 
without inquiring into it in an objective and expert 
manner. These tendencies of his were no secret in 
Hungary, and the result was a strong reaction among 
the Magyar magnates, which he again took as purely 
personal antagonism to himself, and as the years went 
on existing differences increased automatically, until 
finally, under the Tisza regime, they led to direct 


The Archduke's antipathy to party leaders in Hun- 
gary was even stronger than that he felt for Tisza, and 
he showed it particularly to one of the most prominent 
figures of that time. I do not know for certain what 
took place between them ; I only know that several years 
before the catastrophe the gentleman was received in 
audience at the Belvedere, and that the interview came 
to a very unsatisfactory end. The Archduke told me 
that the gentleman arrived, bringing a whole library 
with him in order to put forward legal proofs that the 
Magyar's standpoint was the right one. He, the Arch- 
duke, snapped his fingers at their laws, and said so. It 
came to a violent scene, and the gentleman, pale as 
death, tottered from the room. 

Certain it is that Ministers and other officials rarely 
waited on the Archduke without beating hearts. He 
was capable of flying out at people and terrifying them 
to such a degree that they lost their heads completely. 
He often took their fright to be obstinacy and passive 
resistance, and it irritated him all the more. 


On the other hand, it was extremely easy to get on 
with him if one knew him well and did not stand in awe 
of him. I had many scenes with him, and often lost my 
temper, too ; but there was never any lasting ill-feeling. 
Once when at Konopischt we had a scene one evening 
after dinner because, he said, I always worked in opposi- 
tion to him and rewarded his friendship by treachery. 
I broke off the conversation, remarking that, if he could 
say such things, any further sensible conversation would 
be impossible, and I also stated my intention of leaving 
the next morning. We separated without saying good 
night to each other. Quite early next morning — I was 
still in bed — he appeared in my room and asked me to 
forget what he had said the previous evening, that he 
had not meant it seriously, and thus completely dis- 
armed my still prevailing vexation. 

A despiser of men, with his wits sharpened by his own 
experiences, he never allowed himself to be fooled by 
servile cringing and flattery. He listened to people, 
but how often have I heard him say: ''He is no good; 
he is a toady." Such people never found favor with 
him, as he always mistrusted them at the outset. He 
was protected more than others in such high spheres 
from the poison of servility that attacks all monarchs. 

His best two friends, and the men to whom — after his 
own nearest relations — he was most attached, were his 
brother-in-law Albrecht von Wiirttemberg and the 
Prince Karl of Schwarzenberg. 

The former, a man of charming personality, great 
intelligence, and equally efficient in political as in mili- 
tary matters, lived on a footing of true brotherly unity 
with Franz Ferdinand, and also, naturally, on terms of 
perfect equality. 

Karl of Schwarzenberg was the most sincere, honor- 
able, and straightforward character I have ever en- 
countered ; a man who concealed the truth from no one. 


Rich, independent, and devoid of personal ambition, it 
was quite immaterial to him whether the Archduke was 
pleased with what he asserted or no. He was his friend , 
and considered it his duty to be honest and open — and, 
if necessary, disagreeable. The Archduke understood, 
appreciated, and valued this attitude. I do not think 
there are many monarchs or heirs to the throne who 
would have suffered, as the Archduke did, Schwarzen- 
berg's sayings and doings. 

Franz Ferdinand was on very bad terms with Aehren- 
thal, who easily became abrupt and repellent. Still, 
there was another reason why two such hard millstones 
could not grind together. I do not believe that the 
many reproaches launched against Aehrenthal by the 
Archduke were consequent on political differences; it 
was more Aehrenthal's manner that invariably irritated 
the Archduke. I had occasion to read some of Aehren- 
thal's letters to Franz Ferdinand which, perhaps unin- 
tentionally, had a slight ironical flavor which made the 
Archduke feel he was not being taken seriously. He 
was particularly sensitive in this respect. 

When Aehrenthal fell ill the Archduke made unkind 
remarks about the dying man, and there was great and 
general indignation at the want of feeling shown by 
him. He represented the Emperor at the first part of 
the funeral service, and afterv/ard received me at Bel- 
vedere. We were standing in the courtyard when the 
procession, with the hearse, passed on the way to the 
station. The Archduke disappeared quickly into a 
cottage close by, the windows of which looked on to the 
road, and there, concealed behind the window-curtain, 
he watched the procession pass. He said not a word, 
but his eyes were full of tears. When he saw that I 
noticed his emotion he turned away angrily, vexed at 
having given proof of his weakness. It was just like 
him. He would rather be considered hard and heart- 


less than soft and weak, and nothing was more repug- 
nant to him than the idea that he had aroused suspicion 
of striving to enact a touching scene. I have no doubt 
that at that moment he was suffering the torture of 
self-reproach, and probably suffered the more through 
being so reserved and unable to give free play to his 

The Archduke could be extremely gay, and possessed 
an exceptionally strong sense of humor. In his hap- 
piest years he could laugh like any youth, and carried 
his audience with him by his unaffected merriment. 

Some years ago a German prince, who was unable to 
distinguish between the numerous archdukes, came to 
Vienna. A dinner was given in his honor at the Hof- 
burg, where he was seated next to Franz Ferdinand. 
Part of the program was that he was to have gone 
the next morning with the Archduke to shoot in the 
neighborhood. The German prince, who mistook the 
Archduke Franz Ferdinand for some one else, said to 
him during the dinner: "I am to go out shooting to- 
morrow, and I hear it is to be with that tiresome Franz 
Ferdinand; I hope it will be changed." As far as I 
know, the expedition did not take place; but I never 
heard whether the prince discovered his mistake. The 
Archduke, however, laughed heartily for days at the 

The Archduke invariably spoke of his nephew, the 
present Emperor Charles, with great affection. The 
relations between the two were, however, always 
marked by the absolute subordination of the nephew 
to the uncle. In all political discussions, too, the Arch- 
duke Charles was always the listener, absorbing the 
precepts expounded by Franz ^Ferdinand. 

Charles's marriage met with the full approval of his 
uncle. The Duchess of Hohenberg, too, entertained 
the warmest affection for the young couple. 


The Archduke was a firm partizan of the Great- 
Austrian program. His idea was to convert the 
Monarchy into numerous more or less independent 
national states, having in Vienna a common central 
organization for all important and absolutely necessary 
affairs — in other words to substitute federalization for 
dualism. Now that, after terrible mihtary and revo- 
lutionary struggles, the development of the former 
Monarchy has been accomplished in a national spirit, 
there cannot be many to contend that the plan is 
Utopian. At that time, however, it had many oppo- 
nents who strongly advised against dissecting the state 
in order to erect in its place something new and ''pre- 
sumably better," and the Emperor Francis Joseph was 
far too conservative and far too old to agree to his 
nephew's plans. This direct refusal of the idea cher- 
ished by the Archduke offended him greatly, and he 
complained often in bitter terms that the Emperor 
turned a deaf ear to him as though he were the ' ' lowest 
serving-man at Schonbrunn." 

The Archduke lacked the knowledge of how to deal 
with people. He neither could nor would control him- 
self, and, charming though he could be when his natural 
heartiness was allowed free scope, just as httle could he 
conceal his anger and ill-humor. Thus it came about 
that the relations between him and the aged Emperor 
grew more and more strained. There were doubtless 
faults on both sides. The standpoint of the old Em- 
peror, that as long as he lived no one else should inter- 
fere, was in direct opposition to that of the Archduke, 
who held that he would one day have to suffer for the 
present faults in the administration, and any one 
acquainted with life at court will know that such differ- 
ences between the highest individuals are quickly raked 
together and exaggerated. At every court there are 
men who seek to gain their master's favor by pouring 


oil on the flames, and who, by gossip and stories of all 
kinds, add to the antipathy that prevails. Thus it 
was in this case, and, instead of being drawn closer 
together, the two became more and more estranged. 

The Archduke had but few friends, and under the 
old monarch practically none at all. That was one of 
the reasons for the advances he made to the Emperor 
WilHam. In reality, they were men of such a different 
type that there could be no question of friendship in 
the true sense of the word, or any real under- 
standing between him and the Emperor William, 
and the question was practically never mooted. 
The only point common to both their characters was a 
strongly defined autocratic trait. The Archduke had 
no sympathy with the speeches of the Emperor William, 
nor yet with his obvious desire for popularity, which the 
Archduke could not understand. The Emperor Will- 
iam, on his part, undoubtedly grew more attached to 
the Archduke during his latter years than he had been 
originally. Franz Ferdinand was not on such good 
terms with the Crown Prince of Germany. They 
spent some weeks together at St. Moritz in Switzer- 
land, without learning to know each other any better; 
but this can readily be explained by the difference in age 
and also by the much more serious views of life held by 
the Archduke. 

The isolation and retirement in which the Archduke 
lived, and the regrettably restricted intercourse he had 
with other circles, gave rise to the circulation of some 
true, besides numerous false, rumors. One of these 
rumors, which is still obstinately kept up, was to the 
effect that the Archduke was a fanatic for war and 
looked upon war as a necessary aid to the realization of 
his plans for the future. Nothing could be more untrue, 
and, although the Archduke never openly admitted 
it to me, I am convinced that he had an instinctive feel- 


ing that the Monarchy would never be able to bear the 
terrible test of strength of a war, and the fact is that, 
instead of working to encourage war, his activities lay 
all in the opposite direction. I recollect an extremely 
symptomatic episode. I do not remember the exact 
date, but it was some time before the death of the 
Archduke. One of the well-known Balkan turmoils 
threw the Monarchy into a state of agitation, and the 
question whether to mobilize or not became the order 
of the day. I chanced to be in Vienna, where I had an 
interview with Berchtold, who spoke of the situation 
with much concern and complained that the Archduke 
was acting in a warlike spirit. I offered to draw the 
Archduke's attention to the danger of the proceeding, 
and put myself in telegraphic communication with him. 
I arranged to join his train that same day when he 
passed through Wessely on his way to Konopischt. I 
had only the short time between the two stations for 
my conversation. I therefore at once took the bull 
by the horns and told him of the rumors current about 
him in Vienna and of the danger of promoting a conflict 
with Russia by too strong action in the Balkans. I did 
not meet with the slightest opposition from the Arch- 
duke, and in his usual expeditious way he wrote, while 
still in the train, a telegram to Berchtold in which he 
expressed his perfect agreement in maintaining a 
friendly attitude and repudiated all the reports of his 
having been opposed to it. It is a fact that certain of 
the military, who were anxious for war, made use of the 
Archduke, or rather misused him, in order to carry on 
a military propaganda in his name and thus to give rise 
to so wrongful an estimate of him. Several of these 
military men died a hero's death in the war; others 
have disappeared and are forgotten. Conrad, Chief of 
the General Staff, was never among those who misused 
the Archduke. He could never have done such a 


thing. He carried out himself what he considered 
necessary and did it openly and in face of everybody. 

In connection with these reports about the Archduke 
there is one remarkable detail that is worthy of note. 
He told me himself how a fortune-teller once predicted 
that ' ' he would one day let loose a world war. ' ' 

Although to a certain extent this prophecy flattered 
him, containing as it did the unspoken recognition that 
the world would have to reckon on him as a powerful 
factor, still he emphatically pointed out how mad such 
a prophecy was. It was fulfilled, however, later, 
though very differently from what was meant originally, 
and never was prince more innocent of causing blood to 
flow than the unhappy victim of Sarajevo. 

The Archduke suffered most terribly under the con- 
ditions resulting from his unequal marriage. The sin- 
cere and true love he felt for his wife kept alive in him 
the wish to raise her to his rank and privileges, and the 
constant obstacles that he encountered at all court 
ceremonies embittered and angered him inexpressibly. 
The Archduke was firmly resolved that when he came 
to the throne he would give to his wife, not the title of 
Empress, but a position which, though without the 
title, would bestow upon her the highest rank. His 
argument was that, wherever he was she would be the 
mistress of the house, and as such was entitled to the 
highest position. *' Therefore, she will take precedence 
of all the archduchesses." Never did the Archduke 
show the slightest wish to alter the succession and put 
his son in place of the Archduke Charles. On the con- 
trary, he was resolved that his first official act on coming 
to the throne would be to publish a solemn declaration 
containing his intention, in order to counteract the 
ever-recurring false and biased statements. As regards 
his children, for whom he did everything that a loving 
father's heart could devise, his greatest wish was to see 


them become wealthy, independent private individuals, 
and be able to enjoy life without any material cares. 
His plan was to secure the title of Duke of Hohenberg 
for his eldest son. It was, therefore, in harmony with 
this intention that the Emperor Charles conferred the 
title on the youth. 

One fine quality in the Archduke was his fearlessness. 
He was quite clear that the danger of an attempt to 
take his life would always be present, and he often 
spoke quite simply and openly of such a possibility. A 
year before the outbreak of war he informed me that the 
Freemasons had resolved to kill him. He even gave 
me the name of the town where the resolution was 
passed — it has escaped my memory now — and men- 
tioned the names of several Austrian and Hungarian 
politicians who must have been in the secret. He also 
told me that when he went to the coronation in Spain 
he was to have traveled together with a Russian grand 
duke, but shortly before the train started the news 
came that the grand duke had been murdered on the 
way. He did not deny that it was with mixed feehngs 
that he stepped into his compartment. When at St. 
Moritz news was sent him that two Turkish anarchists 
had arrived in Switzerland, intending to murder him, 
that every effort was being made to capture them, but 
that so far no trace of them had been discovered, and he 
was advised to be on his guard. The Archduke showed 
me the telegram at the time. He laid it aside without 
the shghtest sign of fear, saying that such events, when 
announced beforehand, seldom were carried out. The 
Duchess suffered all the more in her fears for his life, 
and I think that in imagination the poor lady often 
went through the catastrophe of which she and her 
husband were the victims. Another praiseworthy 
feature in the Archduke was that, out of consideration 
for his wife's anxiety, he tolerated the constant pres- 


ence of a detective, which not only bored him terribly, 
but in his opinion was absurd. He was afraid that if 
the fact became known it would be imputed to timidity 
on his part, and he conceded the point solely with the 
view of calming his wife's fears. 

But he anxiously concealed all his good qualities and 
took an obstinate pleasure in being hard and disagree- 
able. I will not endeavor here to excuse certain traits 
in his character. His strongly pronounced egotism 
cannot be denied any more than the hardness of char- 
acter which made him insensible to the sufferings of all 
who were not closely connected with him. He also 
made himself hated by his severe financial proceedings 
and his inexorable judgment on any subordinate whom 
he suspected of the slightest dishonesty. In this con- 
nection there are hundreds of anecdotes, some true, 
some false. These petty traits in his character injured 
him in the eyes of the great pubHc, while the really great 
and manly qualities he possessed were unknown to 
them, and were not weighed in the balance in his favor. 
For those who knew him well his great and good quali- 
ties outweighed the bad ones a hundredfold. 

The Emperor was always very perturbed concerning 
the Archduke's plans for the future. There was also a 
stern trait in the old monarch's character, and in the 
interests of the Monarchy he feared the impetuosity 
and obstinacy of his nephew. Nevertheless, he often 
took a very magnanimous view of the matter. For 
instance. Count Stiirgkh, the murdered Prime Minister, 
has given me details respecting my nomination to the 
Herrenhaus which are very characteristic of the old 
monarch. It was Franz Ferdinand's wish that I 
should be in the Herrenhaus, as he was anxious for me 
to be one of a delegation and also to profit by my ex- 
tensive training in the province of foreign policy. I 

must mention here that it had been impressed on the 


Emperor on all sides that the Archduke's friends and 
trusted men were working against him; a version of 
affairs which to a certain degree he obviously believed, 
owing to his numerous disputes with Franz Ferdinand. 
On Stiirgkh mentioning my name as a candidate for 
the Herrenhaus, the Emperor hesitated a moment 
and then said: "Ah yes. That is the man who is to 
be Minister for Foreign Affairs when I am dead. Let 
him go to the Herrenhaus that he may learn a little 

PoHtical discussions with the Emperor Francis Jo- 
seph were often very difficult, as he kept strictly to the 
individual government department and discussed only 
what referred thereto. While I was ambassador the 
Emperor would discourse on Rumania and the Balkans, 
but on nothing else. Meanwhile, the different ques- 
tions were often so closely interwoven that it was im- 
possible to separate them. I remember at one audi- 
ence where I submitted to the Emperor the Rumanian 
plans for a closer connection with the Monarchy — 
plans which I shall allude to in a later chapter — and in 
doing so I was naturally bound to state what the 
Rumanians proposed respecting the closer connection 
with Hungary, and also what changes would be neces- 
sitated thereby in the Hungarian administration. The 
Emperor at once broke off the conversation, saying that 
it was a matter of Hungarian internal policy. 

The old Emperor was almost invariably kind and 
friendly, and to the very last his knowledge of the 
smallest details was astonishing. He never spoke of 
the different Rumanian Ministers as the Minister of 
Agriculture, of Trade, or whatever it might be, but 
mentioned them all by name and never made a 

I saw him for the last time in October, 191 6, after 
my definite return from Rumania, and found him then 


quite clear and sound mentally, though faiHng in bodily 

The Emperor Francis Joseph was a ''grand seigneur" 
in the true sense of the word. He was an Emperor and 
remained always unapproachable. Every one left his 
presence feeling he had stood before an Emperor. His 
dignity in representing the monarchical idea was unsur- 
passed by any sovereign in Europe. 

He was borne to his grave at a time of great military 
successes for the Central Powers. He lies now in the 
Im^perial vault, and a century seems to have elapsed 
since his death; the world is changed. 

Day by day streams of people pass by the little 
church, but no one probably gives a thought to him 
who lies in peace and forgotten, and yet he, through 
many long years, embodied Austria, and his person 
was a common center for the state that so rapidly was 
falling asunder. 

He is now at rest, free from all care and sorrow; he 
saw his wife, his son, his friends all die, but fate has 
spared him the sight of his expiring Empire. 

Franz Ferdinand's character held many sharply de- 
fined corners and edges; judging him objectively, no one 
can deny his great faults. Though the circumstances of 
his death were so tragic, it may well be that for him it 
was a blessing. It is hardly conceivable that, once on 
the throne, the Archduke would have been able to 
carry out his plans. The structure of the Monarchy 
which he was so anxious to strengthen and support was 
already so rotten that it could not have stood any great 
innovations, and if not the war, then probably the 
revolution, would have shattered it. On the other 
hand, there seems to be no doubt that the Archduke, 
with all the vehemence and impulsiveness of his char- 
acter, would have made the attempt to rebuild the 


entire structure of the Monarchy. It is futile to com- 
ment on the chances of his success, but according to 
human foresight the experiment would not have suc- 
ceeded, and he would have succumbed beneath the ruins 
of the falling Monarchy. 

It is also futile to conjecture how the Archduke would 
have acted had he lived to see the war and the upheaval. 
I think that in two respects his attitude would have 
differed from that taken. In the first place, he never 
would have agreed to our army being under German 
control. It would not have been consistent with his 
strongly developed autocratic tendencies, and he was 
too clever politically not to see that we should thereby 
lose all political freedom of action. In the second 
place, he would not, like the Emperor Charles, have 
yielded to revolution. He would have gathered his 
faithful followers round him and would have fallen 
fighting, sword in hand. He would have fallen as did 
his greatest and most dangerous enemy, Stephen Tisza. 

But he died the death of a hero on the battle-field of 
honor, valiantly and in harness. The golden rays of 
the martyr's crown surrounded his dying head. Many 
there were who breathed more freely on hearing the 
news of his death. At the court in Vienna and in 
society at Budapest there was more joy than sorrow, 
the former having rightly foreseen that he would have 
dealt hardly with them. None of them could guess 
that the fall of the strong man would carry them all 
with it and engulf them in a world catastrophe. 

Franz Ferdinand will remain ''portrayed in history, 
divided between two parties — love and hate." But his 
tragic end at the side of his wife, who would not allow 
death to separate them, throws a mild and conciliatory 
light on the whole life of this extraordinary man, whose 
warm heart to the very last was devoted to his father- 
land and duty, 



There was a widely spread but wrongful idea in the 
Monarchy that the Archduke had already drawn up a 
program of his future activities. This was not the 
case. He had very definite and pronounced ideas for the 
reorganization of the Monarchy, but the ideas never 
developed into a concrete plan — they were more like 
the outline of a program that never was completed 
in detail. The Archduke was in touch with experts 
from the different departments; he expounded the 
fundamental views of his future program to promi- 
nent mihtary and poHtical officials, receiving from them 
hints on how to materialize these views; but a really 
finished and thought-out program was never actu- 
ally produced. The ground lines of his program 
were, as already mentioned, the abolition of the dual- 
ism and the reorganization of the Monarchy to form a 
federative state. He was not clear himself into how 
many states the Hapsburg Monarchy would be con- 
verted, but the principle was the rebuilding of the 
Monarchy on a national basis. Having always in view 
that prosperity depended on the weakening of the Mag- 
yar influence, the Archduke was in favor of a strong 
preference for the different nationalities living in Hun- 
gary, the Rumanians in particular. Not until my 
return to Bukharest and following on my reports did the 
Archduke conceive the plan of ceding Transylvania 
to Rumania and thus adding Greater Rumania to the 
Hapsburg Empire. 

His idea was to make of Austria separate German, 
Czech, Southern Slav, and Pohsh states, which in some 
respects would be autonomous; in others, would be 
dependent on Vienna as the center. But, so far as I 
know, his program was never quite clearly defined and 
was subject to various modifications. 


The Archduke had a great dislike for the Germans, 
especially the Northern Bohemia :s, who were partizans 
of the Pan- Germanic tendencies, and he never forgave 
the attitude of the Deputy Schonerer. He had a 
decided preference for all Germans in the Alpine coun- 
tries, and altogether his views were very similar to those 
of the Christian SociaHsts. His political ideal was 
Lueger. When Lueger was lying ill the Archduke said 
to me: ''If God will only spare this man, no better 
Prime Minister could be found. ' ' Franz Ferdinand had 
a keen desire for a more centralized army. He was a 
violent opponent of the endeavors of the Magyars, 
whose aim was an independent Hungarian army, and 
the question of rank, word of command, and other 
incidental matters could never be settled so long as 
he lived, because he violently resisted all Hungarian 

The Archduke had a special fondness for the navy. 
His frequent visits to Brioni brought him into close 
touch with our navy. He was always anxious to trans- 
form the Austrian navy into one worthy of a great 
Power. In regard to foreign pohcy, the Archduke was 
always in favor of a Triple Alliance of the three Em- 
perors. The chief motive of this idea must have been 
that, in the three then apparently so powerful mon- 
archs at Petersburg, Berhn, and Vienna, he saw the 
strongest support against revolution, and wished 
thereby to build up a strong barrier against disorgan- 
ization. He saw great danger to the friendly relations 
between Russia and ourselves in the rivalry between 
Vienna and Petersburg in the Balkans, and, contrary to 
the reports that have been spread about him, he was 
rather a partizan than an opposer of Serbia. He was 
in favor of the Serbians because he felt assured that the 
petty agrarian pohcy of the Magyars was responsible 
for the constant annoyance of the Serbians. He favored 


meeting Serbia half-way, because he considered that 
the Serbian question was a source of discord between 
Vienna and Petersburg. Another reason was that he 
was no friend of King Ferdinand of Bulgaria, who con- 
stantly pursued an anti-Serbian policy. I believe that 
if those who were responsible for the organization of the 
assassination of the Archduke had known what little 
justification there was for supposing him to be the man 
they thought him, they would have desisted. 

Franz Ferdinand had a very pronounced feeling that 
in spite of all alliances the Monarchy must remain inde- 
pendent. He was opposed to any closer combine with 
Germany, not wishing to be bound to Germany more 
than to Russia, and the plan that was formulated later 
as *' Central Europe" was always far removed from 
his wishes and endeavors. 

His plans for the future were not worked out, not 
complete, but they were sound. This, however, is not 
sufficient to enable one to say that they could have been 
successfully carried out. Under certain circumstances 
more harm than good will result from energy devoid of 
the necessary calm, prudence, wisdom, and, above all, 



THE Emperor William has been for so long the center 
of historic events, so much has been written about 
him, that he appears to be known to all the world ; and 
yet I believe he has often been misrepresented. 

It is well known that the scarlet thread running 
through the whole character of William II was his firm 
conviction that he was the "elect of God," and that the 
dynasty was inextricably bound to the German people. 
Bismarck also believed in the dynastic fidelity of the 
Germans. It seems to me that there is just as little 
dynastic as republican spirit in nations — just as little in 
the Germans as in others. There is merely a feeling of 
content or discontent which manifests itself either for or 
against the dynasty and the form of government. Bis- 
marck himself was a proof of the justice of this argument. 
As he himself always maintained, he was thoroughly 
dynastic — but only during the lifetime of the Emperor 
William I. He had no love for William II, who had 
treated him badly, and made no secret of his feelings. 
He hung the picture of the "yo^^^S man " in the scullery 
and wrote a book about him which, owing to its con- 
tents, could not be published. 

The monarchists who derive benefit from their 
attachment to the reigning monarch deceive them- 
selves as to their true feelings. They are monarchists 


because they consider that form of government the 
most satisfactory one. The repubHcans, who appar- 
ently glorify the majesty of the people, really mean 
themselves. But in the long run a people will always 
recognize that form of government which soonest can 
give it order, work, prosperity, and contentment. In 99 
per cent, of the population, the patriotism and enthu- 
siasm for one or other form of government is nothing 
but a matter of material considerations. They prefer a 
good king to a bad republic, and vice versa; the form of 
government is the means to the end, but the end is the 
contentment of the people governed. Nor has the 
liberty of those governed anything to do with the form 
of government. Monarchical England is just as free as 
republican America, and the Bolshevists have demon- 
strated ad oculus to the whole world that the proletariat 
exercises the greatest tyranny. 

The war that was lost swept away the monarchs, but 
the republic will be maintained only if it can convince 
the people that it is more successful in satisfying the 
masses than the monarchs were, a proof which — it 
seems to me — the German-Austrian Republic has hith- 
erto failed to give. 

The conviction that these questionable statements 
not only are false but also objectionable and criminal 
errors, that the divine will has placed the monarch at 
his post and keeps him there — this conviction was sys- 
tematically imprinted in the German people and 
formed an integral part of the views attributed to the 
Emperor. All his pretensions are based on this; they 
all breathe the same idea. Every individual, however, 
is the product of his birth, his education, and his ex- 
perience. In judging William II it must be borne in 
mind that from his youth upward he was deceived and 
shown a world which never existed. All monarchs 
should be taught that their people do not love them; 


that they are quite indifferent to them; that it is not 
love that makes them follow them and look up to them, 
but merely curiosity; that they do not acclaim them 
from enthusiasm, but for their own amusement, and 
would as soon hiss at them as cheer them. The loyalty 
of subjects can never be depended on; it is not their 
intention to be loyal, but only contented; they only 
tolerate the monarchs as long as they themselves are 
contented, or as long as they have not enough strength 
to abolish them. That is the truth, a knowledge of 
which would prevent the monarchs from arriving at 
unavoidably false conclusions. 

The Emperor WilHam is an example of this. I do 
not think there is another regent who had better inten- 
tions than he had. He lived only for his calling — as he 
viewed it. All his thoughts and longings were centered 
round Germany. His relations, pleasures, and amuse- 
ments were all subservient to the one idea of making 
and keeping the German people great and happy, and if 
good-will were sufficient to achieve great things the 
Emperor William would have done it. From the 
very beginning he was misunderstood. He made 
statements and gestures intended to win not only his 
listeners, but the whole world, which had just the con- 
trary effect. But he never was conscious of the 
practical effect of his actions, because he was system- 
atically misled, not by those in his immediate presence, 
but by the entire German people. How many millions, 
who to-day only fling curses at him, could not bow low 
enough when he appeared on the horizon in all his 
splendor; how many felt overjoyed if the Imperial 
glance fell on them? — and none of them realize that 
they themselves are to blame for having shown the 
Emperor a world which never existed, and driven him 
into a course which he otherwise would never have 
taken. It certainly cannot be denied that the whole 


nature of the Emperor was peculiarly susceptible to 
this characteristically German attitude, and that mon- 
archs less talented, less keen, less ready, and, above all, 
less impregnated with the idea of self-sufficiency, are not 
so exposed to the poison of popularity as he was. 

I once had a chance of studying the Emperor William 
in a very important phase of his life. I met him at the 
house of a friend in the celebrated days of November, 
1908, when great demonstrations against the Emperor 
occurred in the Reichstag, and when the then Imperial 
Chancellor, Prince Biilow, exposed him. Although he 
did not allude to the matter to us with whom he was 
not familiar, the powerful impression made upon him 
by these events in Berlin was very obvious, and I felt 
that in William II I saw a man who, for the first time 
in his life, with horror-stricken eyes, looked upon the 
world as it really was. He saw brutal reality show its 
countenance on the horizon. For the first time in his 
life, perhaps, he felt his position on his throne to be a 
little insecure. He forgot his lesson too quickly. Had 
the overwhelming impression which prevailed for sev- 
eral days been a lasting one it might perhaps have 
induced him to descend from the clouds to which his 
courtiers and his people had raised him, and once more 
feel firm ground beneath his feet. On the other hand, 
had the German people often treated the German Em- 
peror as they did then, it might have cured him. 

A remarkable incident which occurred on this occasion 
is characteristic of the way in which the Emperor was 
treated by many of the gentlemen of his suite. I had 
opportunity, while waiting at a (J-erman station restau- 
rant for the arrival of the next train, to watch and study 
the excitement of the population at the events in Berlin, 
which bore signs of a revolutionary character. The 
densely crowded restaurant re-echoed with discussion 
and criticisms of the Emperor, when suddenly one of the 


men stood up on a table and delivered a fiery speech 
against the head of the government. With the im- 
pression of this scene fresh in my mind, I described it to 
the members of the Emperor's suite, who were just as 
disagreeably affected by the episode, and it was sug- 
gested that nothing should be said about it to the Em- 
peror. One of them, however, protested most energetic- 
ally and declared that, on the contrary, every detail 
should be told to the Emperor, and, as far as I know, he 
himself probably undertook this disagreeable task. 
This case is characteristic of the desire to keep all un- 
. pleasantness from the Emperor and to spare him even 
the most well-founded criticisms; to praise and exalt 
him, but never to show that he was being blamed. 
This systematic putting forward of the Emperor's divine 
attributes, which in reality was neither due to love of 
his personality not any other dynastic cause, but to the 
purely egotistical wish not to get into disfavor them- 
selves or expose themselves to unpleasantness; this un- 
wholesome state must in the long run act on mind and 
body as an enervating poison. I readily believe that 
the Emperor William, unaccustomed to so great an 
extent to all criticism, did not make it easy for those 
about him to be open and frank. It was, nevertheless, 
true that the enervating atmosphere by which he was 
surrounded was the cause of all the evil at his court. In 
his youth the Emperor William did not always adhere 
strictly to the laws of the Constitution ; he subsequently 
cured himself of this failing and never acted indepen- 
dently of his counselors. At the time when I had official 
dealings with him he might have served as a model of 
constitutional conduct. 

In the case of so young and inexperienced a man as 
the Emperor Charles it was doubly necessary to uphold 
the principle of ministerial responsibility to the fullest 
extent. As according to our Constitution the Emperor 


is not responsible to the law, it was of the greatest im- 
portance to carry out the principle that he could under- 
take no administrative act without the cognizance and 
sanction of the responsible Ministers, and the Emperor 
Francis Joseph adhered to this principle as though it 
were gospel. 

The Emperor Charles, though full of good intentions, 
was devoid of all poHtical training and experience, and 
ought to have been brought up to understand the prin- 
ciples of the Constitution. This, however, had never 
been taken into consideration. 

After my resignation in April, 1918, a deputation from 
the Constitutional and Central party in the Herrenhaus 
waited on the Prime Minister, Doctor von Seidler, and 
pointed out the importance of a severely constitutional 
regime, whereupon Doctor von Seidler declared that 
he took upon himself the full responsibility of the 
''letter incident." 

This was quite preposterous. Doctor von Seidler 
could not be responsible for events that had occurred a 
year before — at a time when he was not Minister — 
apart from its being an established fact that during his 
tenure of office he was not aware of what had happened, 
and not until after my resignation did he learn the Im- 
perial views on the situation. He might just as well 
have accepted responsibility for the Seven Years' War 
or for the battle of Koniggratz. 

In 191 7 and 1918, when I had certain official dealings 
with the Emperor William, his horror of an unpleasant 
discussion was so great that it was a matter of extreme 
difficulty to impart the necessary information to him. 
I recollect how once, at the cost of the consideration due 
to an Emperor, I was compelled to extract a direct 
statement from him. I was with the Emperor Charles 
on the eastern front, but left him at Lemberg, and, 
joining the Emperor William in his train, traveled with 


him for a couple of hours. I had certain things to sub- 
mit to him, none of which was of an unpleasant nature. 
I do not know why it was, but it was obvious that the 
Emperor was expecting to hear some disagreeable state- 
ments, and offered a passive resistance to the request 
for a private interview. He invited me to breakfast 
with him in his dining-car, where he sat in the company 
of ten other gentlemen, and there was no possibility of 
beginning the desired conversation. Breakfast had 
been over some time, but the Emperor made no sign of 
moving. I was several times obliged to request him to 
grant me a private interview before he rose from the 
table, and even then he took with him another official 
from the Foreign Ministry to be present at our conver- 
sation, as though to have some protection against 
anticipated troubles. The Emperor William was never 
rude to strangers, though he often was so to his own 

With regard to the Emperor Charles, the situation 
was very different. He was never anything but 
friendly; in fact I never saw him angry or vexed. 
There was no need for any special courage im making 
an unpleasant statement to him, as there was no danger 
of receiving a violent answer or any other disagreeable 
consequences. And yet the desire to believe only 
what was agreeable and to put from him anything dis- 
agreeable was very strong in the Emperor Charles, and 
neither criticism nor blame made any lasting impression 
on him. But in his case, too, the atmosphere that 
surrounded him rendered it impossible to convince him 
of the brutal realities prevailing. On one occasion, 
when I returned from the front, I had a long conversa- 
tion with him. I reproached him for some act of 
administration and asserted that not only on me but on 
the whole Monarchy his action had made a most un- 
favorable impression. I told him in the course of the 


conversation that he must remember how, when he 
came to the throne, the whole Monarchy had looked 
to him with great hopes, but that now he had already- 
lost 80 per cent, of his popularity. The interview 
ended without incident; the Emperor preserved, as 
usual, a friendly demeanor, though my remarks must 
have affected him unpleasantly. Some hours later we 
passed through a town where not only the station, but 
all buildings, were black with people, standing even on 
the roofs, waving handkerchiefs and loudly welcoming 
the Imperial train as it passed through. The same 
scenes were repeated again and again at other stations 
that we passed. The Emperor turned to me with a 
smile and a look that showed me he was firmily con- 
vinced everything I had told him as to his dwindling 
popularity was false, the living picture before our eyes 
proving the contrary. 

When I was at Brest-Litovsk disturbances began in 
Vienna, owing to the lack of food. In view of the whole 
situation, we did not know what dimensions they would 
assume, and it was considered that they were of a 
threatening nature. When discussing the situation 
with the Emperor, he remarked, with a smile : ' 'The only 
person who has nothing to fear is myself. If it happens 
again I will go out among the people and you will see the 
welcome they will give me." Some few months later 
this same Emperor disappeared silently and utterly out 
of the picture, and among all the thousands who had 
acclaimed him, and whose enthusiasm he had thought 
genuine, not one would have lifted a little finger on his 
behalf. I have witnessed scenes of enthusiasm which 
would have deceived the boldest and most skeptical 
judge of the populace. I saw the Emperor and the 
Empress surrounded by weeping women and men well- 
nigh smothered in a rain of flowers ; I saw the people on 
their knees with uplifted hands, as though worshiping 


a Divinity; and I cannot wonder that the objects of 
such enthusiastic homage should have taken dross for 
pure gold in the firm belief that they personally were 
beloved of the people, even as children love their own 
parents. It is easy to understand that after such 
scenes the Emperor and Empress looked upon all the 
criticism of themselves and the discontent among the 
people as idle talk, and held firmly to the belief that 
grave disturbances might occur elsewhere, but not in 
their own country. Any simple citizen who has held 
for a time a higher position experiences something of the 
kind, but in a lesser degree. I could mention names 
of many men who could not bow low enough as long as 
I was in power, but after my resignation would cross the 
street to avoid a bow, fearing that Imperial disfavor 
might react on them. But years before his rise the 
simple citizen has an opportunity of learning to know 
the world, and, if he be a man of normal temperament, 
will feel the same contempt for the servility shown 
during his time in office as for the behavior he meets 
with afterward. Monarchs are without training in the 
school of life, and therefore usually make a false esti- 
mate of the psychology of humanity. But in this tragi- 
comedy it is they who are led astray. 

It is less easy, however, to understand that respon- 
sible advisers, who are bound to distinguish between 
reality and comedy, should also allow themselves to be 
deceived and draw false political conclusions from such 
events. In 191 8 the Emperor, accompanied by the 
Prime Minister, Doctor von Seidler, went to the 
Southern Slav provinces to investigate matters there. 
He found, of course, the same welcome there as every- 
where, curiosity brought the people out to see him ; pres- 
sure from the authorities, on the one hand, and hope 
of Imperial favors, on the other, brought about ovations 
similar to those in the undoubtedly dynastic provinces. 


And not only the Emperor, but Von Seidler, returned in 
triumph, firmly convinced that everything stated in 
Parliament or written in the papers respecting the 
separatist tendencies of the Southern Slavs was pure 
invention and nonsense, and that they would never 
agree to a separation from the Hapsburg Empire. 

The objects of these demonstrations of enthusiasm 
and dynastic loyalty were deceived by them, but I 
repeat those who were to blame were not the monarchs, 
but those who themselves were the instigators and 
organizers of such scenes and who omitted to enlighten 
the monarchs on the matter. But any such explana- 
tion could only be effectual if all those in the immediate 
neighborhood of the ruler concurred in a similar reck- 
less disregard of truth. For if one out of ten people 
declares such scenes to be not genuine, and the others 
contradict him and assert that the demonstrations of 
the ''love of the people" are overwhelming, the mon- 
arch will always be more inclined to listen to the many 
pleasant rather than to the few unpleasant counsels. 
Willingly or unwillingly, all monarchs try, very hu- 
manly, to resist awakening out of this hypnotic com- 
placency. Naturally, there were men in the entourage 
of the German Emperor whose pride kept them from 
making too large an offering to the throne,. but as a rule 
their suffering in the Byzantine atmosphere of Ger- 
many was greater than their enjoyment. I always 
considered that the greatest sycophants were not those 
living at court, but generals, admirals, professors, 
officials, representatives of the people, and men of 
learning — people whom the Emperor met infrequently. 

During the second half of the war, however, the 
leading men around the Kaiser were not Byzantine — 
Ludendorff certainly was not. His whole nature was 
devoid of Byzantine characteristics. Energetic, brave, 
sure of himself and his aims, he brooked no opposition 



and was not fastidious in his choice of language. To 
him it was a matter of indifference whether he was con- 
fronted by his Emperor or any one else — he spoke 
unrestrainedly to all who came in his way. 

The numerous burgomasters, town councilors, pro- 
fessors of the universities, deputies — in short, men of 
the people and of science — had for years prostrated 
themselves before the Emperor William; a word from 
him intoxicated them — but how many of them are 
there now among those who condemn the former 
regime with its abuses and, above all, the Emperor 
himself ! 

His political advisers experienced great difficulty in 
their business dealings with the Emperor William dur- 
ing the war, as he was always at headquarters and 
seldom in Berlin. The Emperor Charles's absence 
from Vienna was also at times most inconvenient. 

In the summer of 191 7, for instance, he was at 
Reichenau, which necessitated a two hours' motor 
drive; I had to go there twice or three times a week, 
thus losing five or six hours which had to be made good 
by prolonged night-work. On no account would he 
come to Vienna, in spite of the efforts made by his 
advisers to persuade him to do so. From certain 
remarks the Emperor let fall I gathered that the reason 
of this persistent refusal was anxiety concerning the 
health of the children. He himself was so entirely free 
from pretensions that it cannot have been a question of 
his own comfort that prevented his coming. 

The Emperor's desire to restore the Archduke Joseph 
Ferdinand to a post of command was for me a source of 
much unpleasantness. The Archduke is said to have 
been to blame for the Luck episode. I cannot judge 
whether wrongly — as the Emperor maintained — or 
rightly ; but the fact remains that the public no longer 
had confidence in him. Quite accidentally I learned 


that his reinstatement was imminent. As a matter of 
fact, this purely military proceeding in no way con- 
cerned me, but I had to reckon with the feeling of the 
populace, who were in no mood for further burdens, and 
also with the fact that, since Conrad had gone, none of 
those in the Emperor's entourage showed the slightest 
disposition to acquaint him with the truth. The only 
general who, to my personal knowledge, was in the 
habit of speaking frankly to the Emperor was Alvis 
Schonburg, and he was at this time somewhere on the 
Italian front. I therefore told the Emperor that the 
reinstatement was an impossibility, giving as my reason 
the fact that the Archduke had forfeited the confidence 
of the country, and that no mother could be expected to 
give up her son to serve under a general whom every one 
held to be guilty of the Luck catastrophe. The Em- 
peror insisted that this view was unjust, and that the 
Archduke was not culpable. I replied that, even so, 
the Archduke would have to submit. Every one had 
lost confidence in him, and the most strenuous exertions 
of the people could neither be expected nor obtained if 
the command were handed to generals who were unani- 
mously regarded as unworthy of the confidence placed 
in them. 

My efforts were vain. 

I then adopted another course. I sent an official 
from the Department of Foreign Affairs to the Arch- 
duke with the request that he would resign voluntarily. 

It must be admitted that Joseph Ferdinand took both 
a loyal and a dignified attitude, as he himself notified 
the Emperor that he would relinquish his command at 
the front. A short correspondence followed between 
the Archduke and myself, which ..on his side was couched 
in an indignant and not over-polite tone; this, however, 
I did not take amiss, as my interference had been suc- 
cessful in preventing his resuming the command. 


His subsequent appointment as chief of the Air Force 
was made without my knowledge; but this was of no 
importance when compared with the previous plans. 
• •••••• 

There is no doubt that the Byzantine atmosphere of 
Berlin took a more objectionable form than ever was the 
case in Vienna. The very idea of high dignitaries kiss- 
ing the Emperor's hand, as they did in Berlin, would 
have been impossible in Vienna. I never heard of any 
one, even among the keenest sycophants, who demeaned 
himself by such an act, which in Berlin, as I know 
from personal observation, was an every-day occur- 
rence. For instance, after a trip on the Meteor, during 
the ''Kiel Week," the Emperor presented two German 
gentlemen with scarf-pins as a souvenir. He handed 
the pins to them himself, and great was my surprise to 
see them kiss his hand as they thanked him. 

Many foreigners were in the habit of coming for the 
Kiel Week — Americans, French, and English. The 
Emperor paid them much attention, and they nearly 
always succumbed to the charm of his personality. 
Apparently William II had a preference for America; 
on the subject of his feelings regarding England it is 
difficult to express an opinion. My impression always 
was that the Emperor resented the scant sympathy 
shown him in England; he strove to make himself 
beloved, and the failure of his efforts caused him a cer- 
tain annoyance. He was quite aware that the extent 
of his popularity in England would proportionately 
influence Anglo-German relations, and his desire to 
find favor in England did not proceed from personal 
vanity, but from political interests. 

King Edward was known to be one of the best judges 
of men in all Europe, and his interest in foreign policy 
was predominant. He would have been an ideal am- 
bassador. There was never a very good understanding 


between uncle and nephew. When the nephew was 
already Emperor, and his much-older uncle still only a 
prince, the difference in their positions was character- 
ized by the satirical Kiderlen-Wachter in the following 
terms : ' * The Prince of Wales cannot forgive his nephew, 
eighteen years younger than himself, for making a more 
brilliant career than has fallen to his lot." 

Personal sympathy and personal differences in lead- 
ing circles are capable of influencing the world's his- 
tory. Politics are, and always will be, made by men, 
and individual personal relations will always play a 
certain part in their development. Who can to-day 
assert that the course of the world might not have been 
different had the monarchs of Germany and England 
been more alike in temperament? The encircling 
policy of King Edward was not brought into play until 
he was persuaded that an understanding with the Em- 
peror Williami was impossible. 

The difficulty the Emperor experienced in adapting 
himself to the ideas and views of others increased as the 
years went by ; a state of things largely the fault of his 

The atmosphere in which he lived would have killed 
the hardiest plant. Whatever the Emperor said or did, 
whether it was right or wrong, was received with en- 
thusiastic praise and admiration. Dozens of people 
were always at hand to laud him to the skies. 

For instance, a book was published during the war 
entitled Der Kaiser im Felde, by Dr. Bogdan Kriegen. 
The Emperor presented me with a copy when at 
Kreuznach in May, 191 7, and wrote a suitable inscrip- 
tion inside. The book contained an accurate account 
of all the Emperor had done during the campaign — ^but 
it was entirely superficial matter ; where he had driven 
to, where breakfasted, with whom he had spoken, the 
jokes he had made, what clothes he wore, the shining 


light in his eyes, etc., etc. It also recorded his speeches 
to the troops, dull and uninteresting words that he 
addressed to individual soldiers, and much more in the 
same strain. The whole book is impregnated and per- 
meated with boundless admiration and unqualified 
praise. The Emperor gave me the book when I was 
leaving, and I read it through when in the train. 

I was asked a few weeks later by a German officer 
what I thought of the book. I rephed that it was trash 
and could only harm the Emperor, and that it should be 
confiscated. The officer shared my opinion, but said 
that the Emperor had been assured on all sides that the 
book was a splendid work and helped to fire the spirit 
of the army; he therefore had it widely distributed. 
Once, at a dinner at Count Hertling's, I called his 
attention to the book and advised him to suppress it, as 
such a production could only be detrimental to the Em- 
peror. The old gentleman was very angry, and 
declared: ''That was always the way; people who 
wished to ingratiate themselves with the Emperor in- 
variably presented him with such things." A pro- 
fessor from the university had warmly praised the book 
to me, but he went on to say, ''The Emperor had, of 
course, no time to read such stuff and repudiate the 
flattery; neither had he himself found time to read it, 
but would make a point of doing so now." I did not 
know much of that professor, but he certainly was not 
in frequent touch with the Emperor, nor was the author 
of the book. 

In this instance, as in many others, I concluded that 
many of the gentlemen in the Emperor's suite were far 
from being in sympathy with such tendencies. The 
court was not the principal offender, but was carried 
away by the current of sycophancy. 

During my period of office Prince Hohenlohe, the 
Ambassador, had numerous interviews with the Em-^ 


peror William, and invariably spoke most freely and 
openly to him, and yet always was on the best footing 
with him. This was, of course, an easier matter for a 
foreign ambassador than for a German of the Imperial 
Empire, but it proves that the Emperor accepted it 
when done in proper form. 

In his own country the Emperor was either glorified 
and exalted to the skies or else scorned and scoffed at by 
a minority of the press in a prejudicial manner. In the 
latter case it bore so evidently the stamp of personal 
enmity that it was discredited a priori. Had there 
existed earnest papers and organs that would, in digni- 
fied fashion, have discussed and criticized the Em- 
peror's faults and failings, while recognizing all his 
great and good qualities, it would have been much more 
satisfactory. Had there been more books written 
about him showing that the real man is quite different 
from what he is made to appear to be ; that he is full of 
the best intentions and inspired with a passionate love 
of Germany; that in a true and profound religious 
sense he often wrestles with himself and his God, asking 
himself if he has chosen the right way; that his love for 
his people is far more genuine than that of many of the 
Germans for him ; that he never has deceived them, but 
was constantly deceived by them — such literature 
would have been more efficacious and, above all, nearer 
the truth. 

Undoubtedly the German Emperor's gifts and talents 
were above the average, and had he been an ordinary 
mortal would certainly have become a very competent 
officer, architect, engineer, or politician. But for lack 
of criticism he lost his bearings, and it caused his undo- 
ing. According to all the records of the Emperor, 
William I was of a very different nature. Yet Bis- 
marck often had a hard task in dealing with him, 
though Bismarck's loyalty and subservience to the 


dynastic idea made him curb his characteristically ruth- 
less frankness. But William I was a self-made man. 
When he came to the throne and began to govern, his 
kingdom was tottering. Assisted by the very capable 
men he was able to find and to retain, he upheld it, and 
by means of Koniggratz and Sedan created the great 
German Empire. William II came to the throne when 
Germany had reached the zenith of her power. He had 
not acquired what he possessed by his own work, as his 
grandfather had ; it came to him without any effort on 
his part, a fact which had a great and far from favor- 
able influence on his whole mental development. 

The Emperor William was an entertaining and inter- 
esting causeur. One could listen to him for hours with- 
out wearying. Emperors usually enjoy the privilege of 
finding a ready audience, but even had the Emperor 
William been an ordinary citizen he would always have 
spoken to a crowded house. He could discourse on art, 
science, politics, music, religion, and astronomy in a 
most animated manner. What he said was not always 
quite correct; indeed, he often lost himself in very 
questionable conclusions; but the fault of boring others, 
the greatest of social faults, was not his. 

Although the Emperor was always very powerful in 
speech and gesture, still, during the war he was much 
less independent in his actions than is usually assumed, 
and, in my opinion, this is one of the principal reasons 
that gave rise to a mistaken understanding of all the Em- 
peror's administrative activities. Far more than the pub- 
lic imagine he was a driven rather than a driving factor, 
and if the Entente to-day claims the right of being prose- 
cutor and judge in one person in order to bring the Em- 
peror to his trial, it is unjust and an error, as, both pre- 
ceding and during the war, the Emperor William never 
played the part attributed to him by the Entente. 

The unfortunate man has gone through much, and 


more is, perhaps, in store for him. He has been carried 
too high and cannot escape a terrible falL Fate seems 
to have chosen him to expiate a sin which, if it exists at 
all, is not so much his as that of his country and his 
times. The Byzantine atmosphere in Germany was 
the ruin of Emperor William; it enveloped him and 
clung to him like a creeper to a tree; a vast crowd of 
flatterers and fortune-seekers who deserted him in the 
hour of trial. The Emperor William was merely a 
particularly distinctive representative of his class. All 
modern monarchs suffer from the disease; but it was 
more highly developed in the Emperor William and, 
therefore, more obvious than in others. Accustomed 
from his youth to the subtle poison of flattery, at the 
head of one of the greatest and mightiest states in the 
world, possessing almost unlimited power, he succumbed 
to the fatal lot that awaits men who feel the earth recede 
from under their feet and who begin to believe in their 
divine semblance. 

He is expiating a crime which was not of his making. 
He can take with him in his solitude the consolation 
that his only desire was for the best. And notwith- 
standing all that is said and written about William II in 
these days, the beautiful words of the text may be 
applied to him, ''Peace on earth to men of good will." ^ 

When he retires from the world his good conscience 
will be his most precious possession. 

Perhaps in the evening of his days William II will 
acknowledge that there is neither happiness nor unhap- 
piness in mortal life, but only a difference in the strength 
to endure one's fate. 


War was never in William^ IPs program. I am 
not able to say where, in his own mind, he had fixed the 

^ This is a literal rendering of the famous text from the German. 


limits he proposed for Germany and whether it was 
justifiable to reproach him with having gone too far in 
his ambition for the fatherland. He certainly never 
thought of a unified German world-dominion; he was 
not so simple as to think he could achieve that without 
a war, but his plan undoubtedly was permanently to 
establish Germany among the first Powers of the world. 
I know for certain that the Emperor's ideal plan was to 
come to a world agreement with England and, in a cer- 
tain sense, to divide the world with her. In this pro- 
jected division of the world a certain part was to be 
played by Russia and Japan, but he paid little heed to 
the other states, especially to France, convinced that 
they were all nations of declining power. To maintain 
that William intentionally prepared and started this 
war is in direct opposition to his long years of peaceful 
government. Helfferich, in his work Die Vorgeschichte 
des Weltkrieges, speaks of the Emperor's attitude during 
the Balkan troubles, and says : 

A telegram sent by William II at that time to the Imperial 
Chancellor explains the attitude of the German Emperor in this 
critical position for German politics, being similar to the situation 
in July, 1 91 4. The contents of the telegram are as follows : ''The 
Alliance with Austria-Hungary compels us to take action should 
Austria-Hungary be attacked by Russia. In that case France would 
also be involved, and in those circumstances England would not 
long remain quiescent. The present prevailing questions of dispute 
cannot be compared with that danger. It cannot be the intention 
of the Alliance that we, the life interest of our ally not being endan- 
gered, should enter upon a life-and-death conflict for a caprice of 
that ally. Should it become evident that the other side intend to 
attack, the danger must then be faced." 

This calm and decided standpoint, which alone could maintain 
peace, was also the German policy observed in further developments. 
It was upheld when confronted by strong pressure from Russia, as 
also against other tendencies and a certain transitory ill-feeling in 


Whether such feeling did exist in Vienna or not I 
cannot say, but I believe the account is correct. 

It has already been mentioned that all the warlike 
speeches flung into the world by the Emperor were due 
to a mistaken understanding of their effect. I allow 
that the Emperor wished to create a sensation, even to 
terrify people, but he also wished to act on the principle 
of si vis pacem para helium, and by emphasizing the 
military power of Germany he endeavored to prevent 
the many envious enemies of his Empire from declaring 
war on him. 

It cannot be denied that this attitude was often both 
unfortunate and mistaken, and that it contributed to 
the outbreak of war; but it is asserted that the Em- 
peror was devoid of the dohis of making war; that he 
said and did things by which he unintentionally stirred 
up war. 

Had there been men in Germany ready to point out 
to the Emperor the injurious effects of his behavior and 
to make him feel the growing mistrust of him through- 
out the world, had there been not one or two, but dozens 
of such men, it would assuredly have made an impres- 
sion on the Emperor. It is quite true that of all the 
inhabitants of the earth, the German is the one the 
least capable of adapting himself to the mentality of 
other people, and, as a matter of fact, there were per- 
haps but few in the immediate entourage of the Em- 
peror who recognized the growing anxiety of the world. 
Perhaps many of them who so continuously extolled the 
Emperor were really honestly of opinion that his 
behavior was quite correct. It is, nevertheless, impos- 
sible not to believe that among the many clever Ger- 
man politicians of the last decade there were some who 
had a clear grasp of the situation, and the fact remains 
that, in order to spare the Emperor and themselves, 
they had not the courage to be harsh with him and tell 


him the truth to his face. These are not reproaches, 
but reminiscences which should not be superfluous at a 
time when the Emperor is to be made the scapegoat of 
the whole world. Certainly the Emperor, being such 
as he is, the experiment would not have passed off with- 
out there being opposition to encounter and overcome. 
The first among his subjects to attempt the task of 
enlightening the Emperor would have been looked upon 
with the greatest surprise; hence no one would under- 
take it. Had there, however, been men who, regardless 
of themselves, would have undertaken to do it, it would 
certainly have succeeded, as not only was the Emperor 
full of good intentions, but he was also impressionable, 
and consistent purposeful work on a basis of fearless 
honesty would have impressed him. Besides, the Em- 
peror was a thoroughly kind and good man. It was a 
genuine pleasure for him to be able to do good ; neither 
did he hate his enemies. In the summer of 191 7 he 
spoke to me about the fate of the deposed Tsar and of 
his desire to help him and subsequently bring him to 
Germany, a desire due not to dynastic but to human 
motives. He stated repeatedly that he had no desire 
for revenge, but "only to succor his fallen adversary." 

I firmly believe that the Emperor clearly saw the 
clouds grow blacker and blacker on the political hori- 
zon, but he was sincerely and honestly persuaded that 
it was not through any fault of his that they had accu- 
mulated, that they were caused by envy and jealousy, 
and that there was no other way of keeping the threat- 
ening war danger at bay than by an ostentatious atti- 
tude of strength and fearlessness. "Germany's power 
and might must daily be proclaimed to the world, for as 
long as they fear us they will do us no harm " — that was 
the doctrine that obtained on the Spree. And the echo 
came back from the world, "This continued boasting 
of German power and the perpetual attempts at intimi- 


dation prove that Germany seeks to tyrannize the 


When war broke out the Emperor was firmly con- 
vinced that a war of defense was being forced on him, 
which conviction was shared by the great majority of 
the German people. I draw these conclusions solely 
from my knowledge of the Emperor and his entourage 
and from other information obtained indirectly. As I 
have already mentioned, I had not had the sHghtest con- 
nection with Berlin for some years previous to the war, 
and certainly not for two years after it broke out. 

In the winter of 191 7, when I met the Emperor again 
in my capacity as Minister of Foreign Affairs, I thought 
he had aged but was still full of his former vivacity. In 
spite of marked demonstrations of the certainty of vic- 
tory, I believe that WilHam II even then had begun to 
doubt the result of the war and that his earnest wish 
was to bring it to an honorable end. When in the 
course of one of our first conversations I urged him to 
spare no sacrifice to bring it to an end, he interrupted 
me, exclaiming: ''What would you have me do? No- 
body longs for peace more intensely than I do. But 
every day we are told the others will not hear a word 
about peace until Germany has been crushed." It was 
a true answer, for all statements made by England cul- 
minated in the one sentence Germaniam esse delendam. 
I endeavored, nevertheless, to induce the Emperor to 
consent to the sacrifice of Alsace-Lorraine, persuaded 
that if France had obtained all that she looked upon in 
the Hght of a national idea she would not be inclined to 
continue the war. I think that, had the Emperor been 
positively certain that it would have ended the war, and 
had he not been afraid that .so distressing an offer 
would have been considered unbearable by Germany, 
he would personally have agreed to it. But he was 
dominated by the fear that a peace involving such a loss, 


and after the sacrifices already made, would have driven 
the German people to despair. Whether he was justi- 
fied in this fear or not cannot now be confirmed. In 
191 7, and 19 18 as well, the belief in a victorious end was 
still so strong in Germany that it is at least doubtful 
whether the German people would have consented 
to give up Alsace-Lorraine. All the parties in the 
Reichstag were opposed to it, including the Social 

A German official of high standing said to me in the 
spring of 1 9 1 8 : * * I had two sons ; one of them fell on the 
field of battle, but I would rather part with the other 
one, too, than give up Alsace-Lorraine," and many were 
of the same opinion. 

In the course of the year and a half when I had fre- 
quent opportunities of meeting the Emperor, his frame 
of mind had naturally gone through many different 
phases. Following on any great military success, and 
after the collapse of Russia and Rumania, his generals 
were always able to enroll him on their program of 
victory, and it is quite a mistake to imagine that 
William II unceasingly clung to the idea of "Peace 
above all." He wavered, was sometimes pessimistic, 
sometimes optimistic, and his peace aims changed in 
like manner. Humanly speaking, it is very compre- 
hensible that the varying situation at the theater of 
war must have influenced the individual mind, and 
every one in Europe experienced such fluctuations. 

Early in September, 191 7, he T\Tote to the Emperor 
Charles on the subject of an impending attack on the 
Italian front, and in this letter was the following pas- 
sage: "I trust that the possibility of a common offen- 
sive of our allied armies will raise the spirits of your 
Foreign Minister. In my opinion, and in view of the 
general situation, there is no reason to be anything but 
confident." Other letters and statements prove the 


Emperor's fluctuating frame of mind. He, as well as 
the diplomats in the Wilhelmstrasse, made use, with 
regard to the *' war- weary Austria-Hungary," of such 
tactics as demonstrated a pronounced certainty of 
victory in order to strengthen our powers of resistance. 
• •••••• 

The Archduke Friedrich deserves the greatest praise 
for having kept up the friendly relations between Vienna 
and Berlin. It was not always easy to settle the delicate 
questions relating to the conduct of the war without 
giving offense. The honest and straightforward nature 
of the Archduke and his ever friendly and modest 
behavior saved many a difficult situation. 

After our collapse and overthrow, and when the Im- 
perial family could be abused with impunity, certain 
newspapers took a delight in covering the Archduke 
Friedrich with contumely. It left him quite indifferent. 
The Prince is a distinguished character, of faultless 
integrity, and always ready to put down abuse. He pre- 
vented many disasters, and it was not his fault if he did 
not succeed every time. 

When I saw the Crown-Prince Wilhelm again after 
several years, it was the summer of 191 7, I found him 
very tired of war and most anxious for peace. I had 
gone to the French front on purpose to nieet him and to 
try if it were possible through him to exercise some con- 
ciliatory pressure, above all, on the military leaders. A 
long conversation that I had with him showed me very 
clearly that he — if he had ever been of warlike nature — • 
was now a pronounced pacifist. 

Extract from My Diary 

On the Western front, igi^.—We drove to the Camp des Remains, 
but in detachments, in order not to attract the attention of the 
enemy artillery to our cars, for in some places the road was visible 
to the enemy. I drove together with Bethmann. When dis- 


cussing the military leaders, he remarked, ''The generals will 
probably throw hand-grenades at me when they see me." 

An enemy flier cruised high up in the clouds over our heads. 
He circled around, paying little heed to the shrapnel bursting on 
all sides. The firing ceased, and the human bird soared into 
unapproachable heights. The artillery fire a long way ofi sounded 
like distant thunder. 

The French lines are not more than a couple of hundred meters 
distant from the camp. A shot fell here and there and a shell 
was heard to whistle; otherwise all was quiet. It was still early. 
The firing usually begins at ten and cease sat noon — interval for 
lunch — and begins again in the afternoon. 

Poincare's villa is visible on the horizon in the green landscape. 
A gun has been brought to bear on the house — they mean to destroy 
it before leaving — they call this the extreme unction. 

The daily artillery duel began on our return drive, and kept up 
an incessant roar. 

St.-Mihiel. — We stopped at St.-Mihiel, where many French peo- 
ple still remain. They were detained as hostages to prevent the 
town from being fired at. People were standing about in the 
streets, watching the cars go by. 

I spoke to an old woman, who sat by herself on her house steps. 
She said: "This disaster can never be made good, and it cannot 
well be worse than it is now. It is quite the same to me what 
happens. I do not belong here; my only son has been killed and 
my house is burned. Nothing is left me but my hatred of the 
Germans, and I bequeath that to France." And she gazed past 
me into vacancy. She spoke quite without passion, but was terribly 

This terrible hatred! Generations will go to their graves before 
the flood of hatred is abated. Would a settlement, a peace of 
understanding, be possible with this spirit of the nations? Will 
it end by one of them being felled to earth and annihilated? 

St.-Privat. — We passed through St.-Privat on our way to Metz. 
Monuments that tell the tale of 1S70 stand along the road. Every- 
where the soil is historic, soaked in blood. Every spot, every 
stone, is reminiscent of past great times. It was here that the seed 
was sown that brought forth the plan of revenge that is being 
fought for now. 

Bethmann seemed to divine my thoughts. "Yes," he said, 
*'that sacrifice would be easier for Germany to bear than to part 
with Alsace-Lorraine, which would close one of the most brilliant 
episodes in her history." 


Sedan. — On the way to the Crown Prince's quarters. There 
stands the Httle house where the historic meeting between Napoleon 
III and Bismarck took place. The woman who lived there at the 
time died only a few weeks ago. For the second time she saw the 
Germans arrive, bringing a Moltke, but no Bismarck, with them, a 
detail, however, that cannot deeply have interested the old lady. 

With the Crown Prince, — A pretty little house outside the town. 
I found a message from the Crown Prince asking me to proceed 
there immediately, where I had almost an hour's private conversa- 
tion with him before supper. 

I do not know if the Crown Prince ever was of a warlike dis- 
position, as people say, but he is so no longer. He longs for peace, 
but does not know how to secure it. He spoke very quietly and 
sensibly. He was also in favor of territorial sacrifices, but seemed 
to think that Germany would not allow it. The great difficulty 
lay in the contrast between the actual military situation, the 
confident expectations of the generals, and the fears entertained 
by the miUtary laymen. Besides, it is not only Alsace-Lorraine. 
The suppression of German militarism spoken of in London means 
the one-sided disarmament of Germany. Can an army far advanced 
on enemy soil whose generals are confident of final victory, can a 
people still undefeated, tolerate that? 

I advised the Crown Prince to speak to his father on the question 
of abdication, in which he fully agreed. I then invited him to come 
to Vienna on behalf of the Emperor, which he promised to do as 
soon as he could get leave. 

On my return the Emperor wrote him a letter, drawn 
up by me, which contained the following passage : 

My Minister of Foreign Affairs has informed me of the interesting 
conversation he had the honor to have with you, and it has been 
a great pleasure to me to hear all your statements, which so exactly 
reflect my own views of the situation. Notwithstanding the super- 
human exertions of our troops, the situation throughout the country 
demands that a stop be put to the war before winter, in Germany as 
well as here. Turkey will not be with us much longer, and with her 
we shall also lose Bulgaria; we two will then be alone, and next 
spring will bring America and a still stronger Entente. From other 
sources there are distinct signs that we could win over France if Ger- 
many could make up her mind to certain territorial sacrifices in 

Alsace-Lorraine. With France secured to us we are the conquerors, 


and Germany will obtain elsewhere ample compensation. But I 
cannot allow Germany to be the only one to make a sacrifice. I too 
will take the lion's share of sacrifice, and have informed His Majesty 
your father that under the above conditions I am prepared not only 
to dispense with the whole of Poland, but to cede Galicia to her 
and to assist in combining that state with Germany, who would 
thus acquire a state in the east while yielding up a portion of her 
soil in the west. In 19 15, at the request of Germany and in the 
interests of our Alliance, we offered the Trentino to faithless Italy 
without asking for compensation in order to avert war. Germany 
is now in a similar situation, though with far better prospects. You, 
as heir to the German Imperial crown, are privileged to have a say 
in the matter, and I know that His Majesty your father entirely 
shares this view respecting your co-operation. I beg of you, there- 
fore, in this decisive hour for Germany and Austria-Hungary, to 
consider the whole situation and to unite your efforts with mine to 
bring the war to a rapid and honorable end. If Germany persists 
in her standpoint of refusal and thus wrecks the hope of a possible 
peace the situation in Austria-Hungary will become extremely 

I should be very glad to have a talk with you as soon as possible, 
and your promise conveyed through Count Czernin soon to pay us a 
visit gives me the greatest pleasure. 

The Crown Prince's answer was very friendly and full 
of anxiety to help, though it was also obvious that the 
German military leaders had succeeded in nipping his 
efforts in the bud. When I met Ludendorff some time 
afterward in Berlin this was fully confirmed by the 
words he flung at me: "What have you been doing to 
our Crown Prince? He had turned so slack, but we 
have stiffened him up again." 

The game remained the same. The last war period 
in Germany was controlled by one will only, and that 
was Ludendorff's. His thoughts were centered on 
fighting, his soul on victory. 



MY appointment as Ambassador to Bukharest in the 
autumn of 19 13 came as a complete surprise to me, 
and was much against my wishes. The initiative in the 
matter came from the Archduke Franz Ferdinand. I 
had never had any doubt that sooner or later the Arch- 
duke would take part in politics, but it took me by sur- 
prise that he should do so in the Emperor Francis 
Joseph's lifetime. 

A great difference of opinion prevailed then in Vienna 
on the Rumanian question, a pro-Rumanian spirit fight- 
ing against an anti- Rumanian one. The head of the 
former party was the Archduke Franz, and with him, 
though in less marked degree, was Berchtold. Tisza 
was the leader on the other side, and carried with him 
almost the entire Hungarian Parliament. The pro- 
Rumanians wished Rumania to be more closely linked 
to the Monarchy; the others, to replace that alliance 
by one with Bulgaria; but both were unanimous in 
seeking for a clear knowledge of how matters stood 
with the alliance, and whether we had a friend or a foe 
on the other side of the Carpathians. My predecessor, 
Karl Furstenberg, had sent in a very clear and correct 
report on the subject, but he shared the fate of so many 
ambassadors — his word was not believed. 

The actual task assigned to me was, first of all, to find 


out whether this alHance was of any practical value, and, 
if I thought not, to suggest ways and means of justify- 
ing its existence. 

I must mention in this connection that my appoint- 
ment as Ambassador to Bukharest had raised a perfect 
storm in the Hungarian Parliament. The reason for 
this widely spread indignation in Hungary at my 
selection for the post was owing to a pamphlet I had 
written some years previously, in which I certainly 
had attacked the Magyar policy somewhat vehemently. 
I maintained the standpoint that a policy of suppression 
of the nations was not tenable in the long run, and that 
no future was in store for Hungary unless she definitely 
abolished that policy and allowed the nations equal 
rights. This pamphlet gave serious displeasure in 
Budapest, and representatives in the Hungarian Parlia- 
ment were afraid I should introduce that policy in 
Rumania, which, following the spirit of the pamphlet, 
was directed against the official policy of Vienna and 
Budapest. It was at this period that I made Tisza's 
acquaintance. I had a long and very frank conversa- 
tion with him on the whole subject, and explained to 
him that I must uphold the standpoint I put forward in 
my pamphlet, as it tallied with my convictions, but that 
I clearly saw that from the moment I accepted the post 
of ambassador I was bound to consider myself as a part 
of the great state machinery, and loyally support the 
policy emanating from the Ballplatz. I still maintain 
that my standpoint is perfectly justifiable. A unified 
policy would be utterly impossible if every subordinate 
official were to publish his own views, whether right or 
wrong, and I for my part would never, as Minister, have 
tolerated an ambassador who attempted to pursue an 
independent policy of his own. Tisza begged me to 
give my word of honor that I would make no attempt 
to introduce a policy opposed to that of Vienna and 


Budapest, to which I readily agreed, provided that the 
Archduke was agreeable to such decision. I then had a 
conversation with the latter, and found that he quite 
agreed with my action, his argument being that as long 
as he was the heir to the throne he would never attempt 
to introduce a policy opposed to that of the Emperor; 
consequently he would not expect it from me, either. 
But should he come to the throne he would certainly 
make an effort to carry out his own views, in which 
case I should no longer be at Bukharest, but probably 
in some post where I would be in a position to support 
his efforts. The Archduke begged me for the sake of 
my friendship for him to accept the post, which I 
finally decided to do after I obtained a promise from 
Berchtold that, at the end of two years as the longest 
term, he would put no obstacle in the way of my retire- 

The Archduke Franz drew his pro-Rumanian pro- 
clivities from a very unreliable source. He hardly 
knew Rumania at all. So far as I know, he had been 
only once in the country, and paid a short visit to King 
Carol at Sinaia; but the friendly welcome accorded to 
himself and his wife by the old King and Queen entirely 
took his warm heart by storm, and he mistook King 
Carol for Rumania. This is again a proof how greatly 
the individual relations of great personalities can influ- 
ence the policy of nations. The royal couple met the 
Archduke at the station; the Queen embraced and 
kissed the Duchess and, placing her at her right side, 
drove with her to the castle. In short, it was the first 
time that the Duchess of Hohenburg had been treated 
as enjoying equal privileges with her husband. During 
his short stay in Rumania the Archduke had the pleas- 
ure of seeing his wife treated as his equal and not as a 
person of slight importance, always relegated to the 
background. At the court balls in Vienna the Duchess 


was always obliged to walk behind all the archduchesses, 
and never had any gentleman allotted to her whose arm 
she could take. In Rumania she was his wife, and 
etiquette was not concerned with her birth. The 
Archduke valued this proof of friendly tactfulness on 
the part of the King very highly, and always afterward 
Rumania, in his eyes, was endowed with a special 
charm. Besides which he very correctly estimated 
that a change in certain political relations would effect 
a closer alliance between Rumania and ourselves. He 
felt, rather than knew, that the Transylvanian question 
lay like a huge obstacle between Vienna and Bukha- 
rest, and that this obstacle once removed would alter 
the entire situation. 

To find out the real condition of the alliance was my 
first task, and it was not difficult, as the first lengthy 
conferences I had with King Carol left no doubt in my 
mind that the old King himself considered the alliance 
very unsafe. King Carol was an exceptionally clever 
man, very cautious and deliberate, and it was not easy 
to make him talk if he intended to be silent. The 
question of the vitality of the alliance was settled by 
my suggesting to the King that the alliance should re- 
ceive pragmatic sanction — i.e., be ratified by the Par- 
liaments at Vienna, Budapest, and Bukharest. The 
alarm evinced by the King at the suggestion, the very 
idea that the carefully guarded secret of the existence 
of an alliance should be divulged, proved to me how 
totally impossible it would be, in the circumstances, to 
infuse fresh life into such dead matter. 

My reports sent to the Ballplatz leave no doubt that I 
answered this first question by declaring in categorical 
fashion that the alliance with Rumania was, under the 
existing conditions, nothing but a scrap of paper. 

The second question, as to whether there were ways 
and means of restoring vitality to the alliance, and what 


they were, was theoretically just as easy to answer as 
difficult to carry out in practice. As already men- 
tioned, the real obstacle in the way of closer relations 
between Bukharest and Vienna was the question of 
Great Rumania; in other words, the Rumanian desire 
for national union with her ''brothers in Transylvania." 
This was naturally quite opposed to the Hungarian 
standpoint. It is interesting, as well as characteristic 
of the then situation, that shortly after my taking up 
office in Rumania, Nikolai Filippescu (known later as a 
war fanatic) proposed that Rumania should join with 
Transylvania, and the whole of united Great Rumania 
enter into relations with the Monarchy similar to the 
relation of Bavaria to the German Empire. I admit 
that I welcomed the idea warmly, for if it were launched 
by a party which justly was held to be antagonistic to 
the Monarchy there can be no doubt that the moderate 
element in Rumania would have accepted it with still 
greater satisfaction. I still believe that had this plan 
been carried out it would have led to a real linking of 
Rumania to the Monarchy, that the notification would 
have met with no opposition, and consequently the out- 
break of war would have found us very differently 
situated. Unfortunately, the plan failed at its very 
first stage, owing to Tisza's strong and obstinate resist- 
ance. The Emperor Francis Joseph held the same 
standpoint as Tisza, and it was out of the question to 
achieve anything by arguing. On the other hand, no- 
body had any idea then that the great war, and with it 
the testing of the alliance, was so imminent, and I con- 
soled myself for my unsuccessful efforts in the firm hope 
that this grand plan, as it seemed to me both then and 
now, would be realized one day under the Archduke 
Franz Ferdinand. 

When I arrived in Rumania a change was proceeding 
in the government. _ Majorescu's Conservative Minis- 


try gave way to the Liberal Ministry of Bratianu. 
King Carol's policy of government was very peculiar. 
From the very first his principle was never to proceed 
with violence or even much energy against injurious 
tendencies in his own country; but, on the contrary, 
always to yield to the numerous claims made by extor- 
tioners. He knew his people thoroughly, and knew 
that both parties, Conservatives and Liberals, must 
alternately have access to the manger until thoroughly 
satisfied and ready to make room the one for the other. 
Almost every change in government was accomplished 
in that manner — the Opposition, desirous of coming 
into power, began with threats and hints at revolution. 
Some highly unreasonable claim would be put forward 
and vehemently insisted upon and the people incited to 
follow it up; the government would retire, unable to 
accede to the demands, and the Opposition, once in 
power, would show no further signs of keeping their 
promise. The old King was well versed in the game; 
he allowed the opposition tide to rise to the highest pos- 
sible limit, when he effected the necessary change of 
individuals and looked on until the game began again. 
It is the custom in Rumania, when a new party comes 
into power, to change the whole personnel, even down 
to the lowest officials. This arrangement, obviously, 
has its drawbacks, though on the other hand it cannot be 
denied that it is a practical one. 

In this manner the Bratianu Ministry came into 
office in 1913. Majorescu's government gave entire 
satisfaction to the King and the moderate elements in 
the country. In the eyes of the Rumanians he had 
just achieved a great diplomatic success by the Peace 
of Bukharest and the acquisition of the Dobrudja, 
when Bratianu came forward with a demand for vast 
agrarian reforms. These reforms are one of the hobby- 
horses of Rumanian policy which are always mounted 


when it is a question of making use of the poor unfor- 
tunate peasants, and the maneuver invariably succeeds, 
largely owing to the lack of intelligence prevailing 
among the peasant population of Rumania, who are 
constantly made the tools of one or other party, and 
simply pushed on one side when the object has been 
obtained. Bratianu also, once he was in office, gave 
no thought to the fulfilment of his promises, but calmly 
proceeded on the lines Majorescu had laid down in his 

Still, it was more difficult to arrive at a satisfactory 
settlem^ent in foreign affairs with Bratianu than it had 
been with Majorescu, as the former was thoroughly 
conversant with all West European matters, and at the 
bottom of his heart was anti-German. One of the dis- 
tinctions to be made between Liberals and Conserva- 
tives was that the Liberals had enjoyed a Parisian edu- 
cation — they spoke no German, only French; while the 
Conservatives, taking Carp and Majorescu as models, 
were offshoots of Berlin. As it was impossible to carry 
out the plan of firmly and definitely linking Rumania to 
us by a change of Hungarian internal policy, the idea 
naturally, almost automatically, arose to substitute 
Bulgaria for Rumania. This idea, which found special 
favor with Count Tisza, could be carried out, both 
because, since the Bukharest peace of 1913, it was out 
of the question to bring Rumania and Bulgaria under 
one roof, and because an alliance with Sofia would have 
driven Rumania straight into the enemy camp. But 
Berchtold, as well as the Archduke Franz Ferdinand, 
was opposed to this latter eventuality, nor would the 
Emperor Francis Joseph have approved of such pro- 
ceedings. Hence no change was made; Rumania was 
not won, nor was Bulgaria substituted for her, and they 
were content in Vienna to leave everything to the future. 

In a social sense the year that I spent in Rumania 


before the war was not an unpleasant one. The rela- 
tions of an Austrian-Hungarian ambassador with the 
court, as with the numerous Bojars, were pleasant and 
friendly, and nobody could then have imagined what 
torrents of hatred were so soon to be launched against 
the Austro-Hungarian frontiers. 

Social life became less pleasant during the war, as will 
be seen from the following instance. There lived at 
Bukharest a certain Lieut. -Col. Prince Sturdza, who 
was a noted braggart and brawler and an inveterate 
enemy of Austria-Hungary. I did not know him per- 
sonally, and there was no personal reason for him to 
begin one day to abuse me publicly in the papers as 
being an advocate of the Monarchy. I naturally took 
not the slightest notice of his article, whereupon he 
addressed an open letter to me in the Adeverul, in which 
he informed me that he would box my ears at the first 
opportunity. I telegraphed to Berchtold and asked 
the Emperor's permission to challenge this individual, 
as, being an officer, he was, according to our ideas, 
entitled to satisfaction. The Emperor sent word that 
it was out of the question for an ambassador to fight a 
duel in the country to which he was accredited, and 
that I was to complain to the Rumanian government. 
I accordingly went to Bratianu, who declared that he 
was totally unable to move in the matter. According 
to the laws and regulations of the country it was impos- 
sible to protect a foreign ambassador against such 
abuse. If Sturdza carried out his threats he would be 
arrested. Until then nothing could be done. 

Upon this I assured Bratianu that if such were the 
case I would in future arm myself with a revolver and, 
if he attacked me, shoot the man; if one lived in a coun- 
try where the habits of the Wild West obtained, one 
must act accordingly. I sent word to the lieutenant- 
colonel that each day, at one o'clock, I could be found 


at the Hotel Boulevard, where he would find a bullet 
awaiting him. 

The next time I saw the Emperor Francis Joseph he 
asked for further information concerning the episode, 
and I told him of my conversation with Bratianu and of 
my firm intention to be my own helper. The Emperor 
rejoined: "Naturally you cannot allow yourself to be 
beaten. You are quite right; if he lays hands on you, 
shoot him." 

I afterward met Sturdza several times in restaurants 
and drawing-rooms without his attempting to carry out 
his threats. This man, whose nature was that of a 
daring adventurer, afterward deserted to the Russian 
army and fought against us at a time when Rumania 
still was neutral. I then completely lost sight of him. 

The absolute freedom of the press, combined with the 
brutality of the prevailing customs, produced the most 
varied results, even going so far as abuse of their own 
kings. In this connection King Carol gave me many 
drastic instances. While King Ferdinand was still 
neutral, one of the comic papers contained a picture of 
the King taking aim at a hare, while underneath these 
words were supposed to come from the hare: *'My 
friend, you have long ears, I have long ears; you are a 
coward, I am a coward. Wherefore would my brother 
shoot me?" 

On the day when war broke out this freedom of the 
press was diverted into a different channel and replaced 
by the severest control and censorship. 

Rumania is a land of contrasts, as regards the 
landscape, the climate, and social conditions. The 
mountainous north, with the wonderful Carpathians, is 
one of the most beautiful districts. Then there are the 
endless, unspeakably monotonous, but fertile plains of 
Wallachia, leading into the valley of the Danube, which 
is a very paradise. In spring particularly, when the 


Danube each year overflows its banks, the beauty of 
the landscape baffles description. It is reminiscent of 
the tropics, with virgin forests standing in the water, 
and islands covered with luxuriant growth scattered 
here and there. It is an ideal country for the sports- 
man. All kinds of birds, herons, ducks, pelicans, and 
others, are to be met with, besides wolves and wildcats, 
and days may be spent in rowing and walking in this 
paradise without wearying of it. 

The Rumanians usually care but little for sport, being 
averse to physical exertion. Whenever they can they 
leave the country and spend their time in Paris or on 
the Riviera. This love of travel is so strong in them 
that a law was passed compelling them to spend a cer- 
tain portion of the year in their own country or else pay 
the penalty of a higher tax. The country people, in 
their sad poverty, form a great contrast to the enor- 
mously wealthy Bojars. Although very backward in 
everything relating to culture, the Rumanian peasant 
is a busy, quiet, and easily satisfied type, unpretentious 
to a touching degree when compared with the upper 

Social conditions among the upper ten thousand have 
been greatly complicated, owing to the abolition of 
nobility, whereby the question of titles plays a part un- 
equaled anywhere else in the world. Almost every 
Rumanian has a title derived from one or other source; 
he values it highly, and takes it much amiss when a 
foreigner betrays his ignorance on the subject. As a 
rule, it is safer to adopt the plan of addressing every one 
as ''Mon prince.'' Another matter difficult for a for- 
eigner to grasp is the inner status of Rumanian society, 
owing to the incessant divorce and subsequent re- 
marriages. Nearly every woman has been divorced at 
least once and married again, the result being, on the 
one hand, the most complicated questions of rela- 


tionship, and, on the other, so many breaches of per- 
sonal relations as to make it the most difficult task to 
invite twenty Rumanians, particularly ladies, to dinner 
without giving offense in some quarter. 

In the days of the old regime it was one of the duties 
of the younger members of the Embassy to develop 
their budding diplomatic talents by a clever compila- 
tion of the list for such a dinner and a wise avoidance 
of any dangerous rock ahead. But as the question of 
rank in Rumania is taken just as seriously as though it 
were authorized, every lady claims to have first rank — ■ 
the correct allotment of places at a dinner is really a 
question for the most efficient diplomatic capacities. 
There were about a dozen ladies in Bukharest who 
would actually not accept an invitation unless they 
were quite sure the place of honor would be given to 

My predecessor cut the Gordian knot of these diffi- 
culties by arranging to have dinner served at small 
separate tables, thus securing several places of honor, 
but not even by these means could he satisfy the am- 
bition of all. 


While at Sinaia I received the news of the assassina- 
tion of the Archduke from Bratianu. I was confined to 
bed, suffering from influenza, when Bratianu tele- 
phoned to ask if I had heard that there had been an 
accident to the Archduke's train in Bosnia, and that 
both he and the Duchess were killed. Soon after this 
first alarm came further news, leaving no doubt as to 
the gravity of the catastrophe. The first impression in 
Rumania was one of profound and sincere sympathy 
and genuine consternation. Rumania never expected 
by means of war to succeed in realizing her national 
ambitions; she only indulged in the hope that a friendly 


agreement with the Monarchy would lead to the union 
of all Rumanians, and in that connection Bukharest 
centered all its hopes in the Archduke and heir to the 
throne. His death seemed to end the dream of a 
Greater Rumania, and the genuine grief displayed in all 
circles in Rumania was the outcome of that feeling. 
Take Jonescu, on learning the news while in my wife's 
drawing-room, wept bitterly; and the condolences that 
I received were not of the usual nature of such messages, 
but were expressions of the most genuine sorrow. 
Poklewsld, the Russian Ambassador, is said to have 
remarked very brutally that there was no reason to 
make so much out of the event, and the general indig- 
nation that his words aroused proved how strong was 
the sympathy felt for the murdered Archduke in the 

When the ultimatum was made known the entire situ- 
ation changed at once. I never had any illusions 
respecting the Rumanian psychology, and was quite 
clear in my own mind that the sincere regret at the 
Archduke's death was due to egotistical motives and to 
the fear of being compelled now to abandon the national 
ambition. The ultimatum and the danger of war 
threatening on the horizon completely altered the 
Rumanian attitude, and it was suddenly recognized 
that Rumania could achieve its object by other means, 
not by peace, but by war — not with, but against the 
Monarchy. I 'would never have believed it possible 
that such a rapid and total change could have occurred 
practically within a few hours. Genuine and simulated 
indignation at the tone of the ultimatum was the order 
of the day, and the universal conclusion arrived at was : 
UAutriche est devenue folle. Men and women with 
whom I had been on a perfectly friendly footing for the 
last year suddenly became bitter enemies. Every- 
where I noticed a mixture of indignation and growing 


eagerness to realize at last their heart's dearest wish. 
The feeling in certain circles fluctuated for some days. 
Rumanians had a great respect for Germany's military 
power, and the year 1870 was still fresh in the memory 
of many of them. When England, however, joined the 
ranks of our adversaries their fears vanished, and from 
that moment it became obvious to the large majority 
of the Rumanians that the realization of their aspira- 
tions was merely a question of time and of diplomatic 
efficiency. The wave of hatred and lust of conquest 
that broke over us in the first stage of the war was much 
stronger than in later stages, because the Rumanians 
made the mistake we all have committed of reckoning 
on too short a duration of the war, and therefore im- 
agined the decision to be nearer at hand than it actu- 
ally was. After the great German successes in the 
west, after Gorlitz and the downfall of Serbia, certain 
tendencies pointing to a policy of delay became notice- 
able among the Rumanians. With the exceptions of 
Carp and his little group all were more or less ready at 
the very first to fling themselves upon us. 

Like a rock standing in the angry sea of hatred, poor 
old King Carol was alone with his German sympathies. 
I had been instructed to read the ultimatum to him the 
moment it was sent to Belgrade, and never shall I for- 
get the impression it made on the old King when he 
heard it. He, wise old politician that he was, recog- 
nized at once the immeasurable possibilities of such a 
step, and before I had finished reading the document 
he interrupted me, exclaiming, *'It will be a world war." 
It was long before he could collect himself and begin to 
devise ways and means by which a peaceful solution 
might still be found. I may mention here that a short 
time previously the Tsar, with Sassonoff, had been in 
Constanza for a meeting with the Rumanian royal 
family. The day after the Tsar left I went to Con- 


stanza myself to thank the King for having conferred 
the Grand Cross of one of the Rumanian orders on me, 
obviously as a proof that the Russian visit had not 
made him forget our alliance, and he gave me some 
interesting details of the said visit. Most interesting 
of all was his account of the conversations with the 
Russian Minister of Foreign Affairs. On asking whether 
Sassonoff considered the situation in Europe to be as 
safe as he (the King) did, Sassonoff answered in the 
affirmative, ''Pomtvu que VAutriche ne touche pas a la 
Serhie.'' I at once, of course, reported this momentous 
statement to Vienna; but neither by the King nor by 
myself, nor yet in Vienna, was the train of thought 
then fully understood. The relations between Serbia 
and the Monarchy were at that time no worse than 
usual; indeed, they were rather better, and there was 
not the slightest intention on our part to injure the 
Serbians. But the suspicion that Sassonofif already 
then was aware that the Serbians were planning some- 
thing against us cannot be got rid of. 

When the King asked me whether I had reported 
Sassonoff 's important remark to Vienna, I replied that 
I had done so, and added that this remark was another 
reason to make me believe that the assassination was a 
crime long since prepared and carried out under 
Russian patronage. 

The crime that was enacted at Debruzin, which made 
such a sensation at the time, gave rise to suspicions of a 
Russo-Rumanian attempt at assassination. 

On February 24, 1914, the Hungarian Correspond- 
ence Bureau published the following piece of news : 

A terrible explosion took place this morning in the official 
premises of the newly instituted Greek-CathoUc-Hungarian bishop- 
ric, which are on the second floor of the Ministry of Trade and Com- 
merce in the Franz Deak Street. It occurred in the office of the 
bishop's representative, the Vicar Michael Jaczkovics, whose secre- 


tary, Johann Slapowszky, was also present in the room. Both of 
them were blown to pieces. The Greek-Cathohc bishop, Stephan 
Miklossy, was in a neighboring room, but had a most marvelous 
escape. Alexander Csatth, advocate and soUcitor to the bishopric, 
who was in another room, was mortally wounded by the explosion. 
In a third room the bishop's servant with his wife were both killed. 
All the walls in the ofhce premises fell in, and the whole building is 
very much damaged. The explosion caused such a panic in the 
house that all the inhabitants took flight and vanished. All the 
windows of the neighboring Town Hall in the Verboczy Street were 
shattered by the concussion. Loose tiles were hurled into the street 
and many passers-by were injured. The four dead bodies and the 
wounded were taken to the hospital. The bishop, greatly distressed, 
left the building and went to a friend's house. The daughter of the 
Vicar Jaczkovics went out of her mind on hearing of her father's 
tragic death. The cause of the explosion has not yet been discovered. 

I soon became involved in the affair when Hungary 
and Rumania began mutually to blame one another as 
originators of the outrage. This led to numerous inter- 
ventions and adjustments, and my task was intensified 
because a presumed accomplice of the murderer Catarau 
was arrested in Bukharest, and his extradition to Hun- 
gary had to be effected by me. This man, of the name 
of Mandazescu, was accused of having obtained a false 
passport for Catarau. 

Catarau, who was a Rumanian-Russian from Bessara- 
bia, vanished completely after the murder and left no 
trace. News came, now from Serbia, then from Albania, 
that he had been found, but the rumors were always 
false. I chanced to hear something about the matter 
in this way. I was on board a Rumanian vessel bound 
from Constanza to Constantinople, when I accidentally 
overheard two Rumanian naval officers talking to- 
gether. One of them said, ''That was on the day 
when the police brought Catarau on board to help 
him to get away secretly." 

Catarau was heard of later at Cairo, which he ap- 
pears to have reached with the aid of Rumanian friends. 



It cannot be asserted that the Rumanian govern- 
ment was implicated in the plot — but the Rumanian 
authorities certainly were, for in the Balkans, as in 
Russia, there are many bands like the cerna ruka, the 
narodna odhrena, etc., etc., who carry on their activities 
alongside the government. 

It was a crime committed by some Russian or Ru- 
manian secret society, and the governments of both 
countries showed surprisingly little interest in investi- 
gating the matter and delivering the culprits up to 

On June 15 th I heard from a reliable source that 
Catarau had been seen in Bukharest. He walked 
about the streets quite openly in broad daylight, and 
no one interfered with him ; then he disappeared. 

To return, however, to my interview with the old 
King. Filled with alarm, he despatched that same 
evening two telegrams, one to Belgrade and one to 
Petersburg, urging that the ultimatum be accepted 
without fail. 

The terrible distress of mind felt by the King when, 
like a sudden flash of lightning from the clouds, he saw 
before him a picture of the World War may be accounted 
for because he felt certain that the conflict between his 
personal convictions and his people's attitude would 
suddenly be known to all. The poor old King fought 
the fight to the best of his ability, but it killed him. 
King Carol's death was caused by the war. The last 
weeks of his life were a torture to him; each message 
that I had to deliver he felt as the lash of a whip. I was 
enjoined to do all I could to secure Rumania's prompt 
co-operation, according to the terms of the alliance, 
and I was even obliged to go so far as to remind him 
that "a promise given allows of no prevarication : that a 
treaty is a treaty, and his honor obliged him to un- 
^sheathe, his sword.'' I recollect one particularly pain- 


ful scene, where the King, weeping bitterly, flung him- 
self across his writing-table and with trembling hands 
tried to wrench from his neck his order Pour la Merite. 
I can affirm without any exaggeration that I could see 
him wasting away under the ceaseless moral blows 
dealt to him, and that the mental torment he went 
through undoubtedly shortened his life. 

Queen EHzabeth was well aware of all, but she never 
took my action amiss; she understood that I had to 
deliver the messages, but that it was not I who com- 
posed them. 

Queen EHzabeth was a good, clever, and touchingly 
simple woman, not a poet qui court apris V esprit, but a 
woman who looked at the world through conciliatory 
and political glasses. She was a good conversational- 
ist, and there was always a poetic charm in all she did. 
There hung on the staircase a most beautiful sea picture, 
which I greatly admired while the Queen talked to me 
about the sea, about her little villa at Constanza, which, 
built on the extreme end of the quay, seems almost to 
lie in the sea. She spoke, too, of her travels and im- 
pressions when on the high seas, and as she spoke the 
great longing for all that is good and beautiful made 
itself felt, and this is what she said to me: ''The sea 
lives. If there could be found any symbol of eternity it 
would be the sea, endless in greatness and everlasting in 
movement. The day is dull and stormy. One after 
another the glassy billows come rolling in and break 
with a roar on the rocky shore. The small white crests 
of the waves look as if covered with snow. And the sea 
breathes and draws its breath with the ebb and flow of 
the tide. The tide is the driving power that forces the 
mighty waters from equator to North Pole. And thus 
it works, day and night, year by year, century by cen- 
tury. It takes no heed of the perishable beings who 
^call themselves lords of the world, who only live for a 


day, coming and going and vanishing almost as they 
come. The sea remains to work. It works for all, for 
men, for animals, for plants, for without the sea there 
could be no organic life in the world. The sea is like a 
great filter, which alone can produce the change of 
matter that is necessary for life. In the course of a 
century numberless rivers carry earth to the sea. Each 
river carries without ceasing its burden of earth and 
sand to the ocean ; and the sea receives the load which 
is carried by the current far out to sea, and slowly and 
by degrees in the course of time the sea dissolves or 
crushes all it has received. No matter to the sea if the 
process lasts a thousand years or more — it may even 
last for ages. Who can tell? 

*'But one day, quite suddenly, the sea begins to 
wander. Once there was sea everywhere, and all con- 
tinents are born from the sea. One day land arose out 
of the sea. The birth was of a revolutionary nature; 
there were earthquakes, volcanic craters, falling cities, 
and dying men — but new land was there. Or else it 
moves slowly, invisibly, a meter or two in a century, 
and returns to the land it used to possess. Thus it 
restores the soil it stole from it, but cleaner, refined, and 
full of vitality to live and to create. Such is the sea 
and its work." 

These are the words of the old, half -blind Queen who 
can never look upon the beloved picture again, but she 
told me how she always idolized the sea and how her 
grandnephews and grandnieces shared her feelings and 
how she grew young again with them when she told 
them tales of olden times. 

One could listen to her for hours without growing 
weary, and always there was some beautiful thought or 
word to carry away and think over. 

Doubtless such knowledge would be more correct 
were it taken from some geological work. But Carmen 


Sylva's words invariably seemed to strike some poetic 
chord ; that is what made her so attractive. 

She loved to discourse on politics, which for her 
meant King Carol. He was her all in all. After his 
death, when it was said that all states in the world were 
losing in the terrible war, she remarked, ''Rumania has 
already lost her most precious possession." She never 
spoke of her own poems and writings. In politics her 
one thought besides King Carol was Albania. She was 
deeply attached to the Princess of Wied, and showed 
her strong interest in the country where she lived. 
Talking about the Wieds one day afforded me an op- 
portunity of seeing the King vexed with his wife ; it was 
the only time I ever noticed it. It was when we were 
at Sinaia, and I was, as often occurred, sitting with the 
King. The Queen came into the room, which she was 
otherwise not in the habit of entering, bringing with her 
a telegram from the Princess of Wied in which she 
asked for something — I cannot now remember what — ■ 
for Albania. The King refused, but the Queen insisted, 
until he at last told her very crossly to leave him in 
peace as he had other things to think of than Albania. 

After King Carol's death she lost all her vital energy 
and the change in the political situation troubled her. 
She was very fond of her nephew Ferdinand — hers was 
a truly loving heart — and she trembled lest he should 
commit some act of treachery. I remember once how, 
through her tears, she said to me: ''Calm my fears. 
Tell me that he will never be guilty of such an act." I 
was unable to reassure her, but a kind Fate spared her 
from hearing the declaration of war. 

Later, not long before her death, the old Queen was 
threatened with total blindness. She was anxious to 
put herself in the hands of a French oculist for an opera- 
tion for cataract, who would naturally be obliged to 
travel through the Monarchy in order to reach Bukha- 


rest. At her desire I mentioned the matter in Vienna, 
and the Emperor Francis Joseph at once gave the 
requisite permission for the journey. 

After a successful operation the Queen sent a short 
autograph poem to one of my children, adding that it 
was her first letter on recovering her sight. At the 
same time she was again very uneasy concerning 

I wrote her the following letter: 

Your Majesty, — My warmest thanks for the beautiful Uttle poem 
you have sent to my boy. That it was granted to me to contribute 
something toward the recovery of your sight is in itself a sufficient 
reward, and no thanks are needed. That your Majesty has ad- 
dressed the first written Hues to my children deUghts and touches me. 

Meanwhile your Majesty must not be troubled regarding politics. 
It is of no avail. For the moment Rumania will retain the policy of 
the late King, and God alone knows what the future will bring forth. 

We are all like dust in this terrible hurricane sweeping through 
the world. We are tossed helplessly hither and thither and know not 
whether we are to face disaster or success. The point is not whether 
we live or die, but how it is done. In that respect King Carol set 
an example to us all. 

I hope King Ferdinand may never forget that, together with 
the throne, his uncle bequeathed to him a political creed, a creed 
of honor and loyalty, and I am persuaded that your Majesty is the 
best guardian of the bequest. 

Your Majesty's grateful and devoted 


When I said that King Carol fought the fight to the 
best of his ability I intended to convey that no one 
could expect him to be different from what he always 
was. The King never possessed in any special degree 
either energy, strength of action, or adventurous cour- 
age, and at the time I knew him, as an old man, he 
had none of those attributes. He was a clever diplomat, 
a conciliatory power, a safe mediator, and one who 
avoided trouble, but not of a nature to risk all and 


weather the storm. That was known to all, and no one, 
therefore, could think that the King would try to put 
himself on our side against the clearly expressed views 
of all Rumania. My idea is that if he had been dif- 
ferently constituted he could successfully have risked 
the experiment. The King possessed in Carp a man 
of quite unusual, even reckless, activity and energy, 
and from the first moment he placed himself and his 
activities at the King's disposal. If the King, without 
asking, had ordered mobilization, Carp's great energy 
would have certainly carried it through. But, in the 
military situation as it was then, the Rumanian army 
would have been forced to the rear of the Russian, and 
in all probability the first result of the battle-fields 
would have changed the situation entirely, and the 
blood that was shed mutually in victorious battles 
would have brought forth the unity that the spirit of 
our alliance never succeeded in evolving. But the 
King was not a man of such caliber. He could not 
change his nature, and what he did do entirely con- 
curred with his methods from the time he ascended the 

As long as the King lived there was the positive 
assurance that Rumania would not side against us, 
for he would have prevented any mobilization against 
us with the same firm wisdom which had always enabled 
him to avert any agitation in the land. He would then 
have seen that the Rumanians are not a warlike peo- 
ple like the Bulgarians, and that Rumania had not the 
slightest intention of risking anything in the campaign. 
A policy of procrastination in the wise hands of the 
King would have delayed hostilities against us indefi- 

Immediately after the outbreak of war Bratianu 
began his game, which consisted of intrenching the 
Rumanian government firmly and willingly in a posi- 


tion between the two groups of Powers, and bandying 
favors about from one to the other, reaping equal 
profits from each until the moment when the stronger 
of the two should be recognized as such and the weaker 
then attacked. 

Even from 1914 to 1916 Rumania was never really 
neutral. She always favored our enemies, and as far 
as lay in her power hindered all our actions. 

The transport of horses and ammunition to Turkey 
in the summer of 191 5 that was exacted from us was 
an important episode. Turkey was then in great 
danger and was asking anxiously for munitions. Had 
the Rumanian government adopted the standpoint 
not to favor any of the belligerent Powers, it would have 
been a perfectly correct attitude, viewed from a neutral 
standpoint, but she never did adopt such standpoint, 
as is shown by her allowing the Serbians to receive 
transports of Russian ammunition via the Danube, 
thus showing great partiality. When all attempts 
failed, the munitions were transmitted, partially, at any 
rate, through other means. 

At that time, too, Russian soldiers were allowed in 
Rumania and were not molested, whereas ours were 
invariably interned. 

Two Austrian airmen once landed by mistake in 
Rumania, and were, of course, interned immediately. 
The one was a cadet of the name of Berthold and a 
pilot whose name I have forgotten. From their prison 
they appealed to me to help them, and I sent word that 
they must endeavor to obtain permission to pay me a 
visit. A few days later the cadet appeared, escorted 
by a Rumanian officer as guard. This officer, not 
being allowed without special permission to set foot 
on Austro-Hungarian soil, was obliged to remain in the 
street outside the house. I had the gates closed, put the 
cadet into one of my cars, sent him out through the 


back entrance, and had him driven to Giurgui, where 
he got across the Danube, and in two hours was again 
at hberty. After a lengthy and futile wait the officer 
departed. His protests came too late. 

The unfortunate pilot who was left behind was not 
allowed to come to the Embassy. One night, however, 
he made his escape through the window and arrived. 
I kept him concealed for some time, and he eventually 
crossed the frontier safely and got away by rail to 

Bratianu reproached me later for what I had done, 
but I told him it was in consequence of his not having 
strictly adhered to his neutrality. Had our soldiers 
been left unmolested, as in the case of the Russians, 
I should not have been compelled to act as I had done. 

Bratianu can never seriously have doubted that the 

Central Powers would succumb, and his sympathies 

were always with the Entente, not only on account 

of his bringing up, but also because of that political 

speculation. During the course of subsequent events 

there were times when Bratianu to a certain extent 

seemed to vacillate, especially at the time of our great 

offensive against Russia. The break through at 

Gorlitz and the irresistible advance into the interior 

of Russia had an astounding effect, in Rumania. 

Bratianu, who obviously knew very little about 

strategy, could simply not understand that the Russian 

millions, whom he imagined to be in a fair way to 

Vienna and Berlin, should suddenly begin to rush 

back, and a fortress like Warsaw be demoHshed like a 

house of cards. He was evidently very anxious then 

and must have had many a disturbed night. On the 

other hand, those who, to begin with, though not for, 

still were not against Austria began to raise their heads 

and breathe more freely. The victory of the Central 

Powers appeared on the horizon like a fresh event. 


That was the historic moment when Rumania might 
have been coerced into active co-operation, but not 
the Bratianu Ministry. Bratianu himself would never 
in any case have ranged himself on our side, but if we 
could have made up our minds then to install a Ma- 
jorescu or a Marghiloman Ministry in office, we could 
have had the Rumanian army with us. In connection 
with this were several concrete proposals. In order to 
carry out the plan we should have been compelled 
to make territorial concessions in Hungary to a Majo- 
rescu Ministry — Majorescu demanded it as a primary 
condition to his undertaking the conduct of affairs, 
and this proposal failed, owing to Hungary's obstinate 
resistance. It is a terrible but a just punishment that 
poor Hungary, who contributed so much to our definite 
defeat, should be the one to suffer the most from the 
consequences thereof, and that the Rumanians, so 
despised and persecuted by Hungary, should gain the 
greatest triumphs on her plains. 

One of the many reproaches that have been brought 
against me is to the effect that I, as Ambassador at 
Bukharest, should have resigned if my proposals were 
not accepted in Vienna. These reproaches are dictated 
by quite mistaken ideas of competency and responsi- 
bility. It is the duty of a subordinate official to describe 
the situation as he sees it and to make such proposals 
as he considers right, but the responsibility for the 
policy is with the Minister of Foreign Affairs, and it 
would lead to the most impossible and absurd state 
of things if every ambassador whose proposals were 
rejected were to draw the conclusion that his resigna- 
tion was a necessary consequence thereof. If officials 
were to resign because they did not agree with the 
view of their chief, it would mean that almost all of 
them would send in their resignations. 

Espionage and counter-espionage have greatly flour- 


ished during the war. In that connection Russia 
showed great activity in Rumania. 

In October, 19 14, an event occurred which was very 
unfortunate for me. I drove from Bukharest to 
Sinaia, carrying certain pohtical documents with me 
in a despatch-case, which, by mistake, was tied on 
behind instead of being laid in the car. On the way the 
case was unstrapped and stolen. I made every effort 
to get it back, and eventually recovered it after a 
search of three weeks, involving much expense. It 
was found at last in some peasant's barn, but nothing 
had apparently been abstracted save the cigarettes 
that were in it. 

Nevertheless, after the occupation of Bukharest, 
copies and photos of all my papers were found in 
Bratianu's house. 

After the loss of the despatch-case I at once tendered 
my resignation in Vienna, but it was not accepted by 
the Emperor. 

The Red Book on Rumania, published by Burian, 
which contains a summary of my most important 
reports, gives a very clear picture of the several phases 
of that period and the approaching danger of war. 
The passing defeats that Rumania suffered justified 
the fears of all those who warned her against premature 
intervention. In order to render the situation quite 
clear, it must here be explained that during the time 
immediately preceding Rumania's entry into war there 
were really only two parties in the country: the one 
was hostile to us and wished for an immediate declara- 
tion of war, and the other was the "friendly" one that 
did not consider the situation ripe for action and 
advised waiting until we were weakened still more. 
During the time of our successes the ''friendly" party 
carried the day. Queen Marie, I believe, belonged to 
the latter. From the beginning of the war she was 


always in favor of ''fighting by the side of England,'* 
as she always looked upon herself as an Englishwoman, 
but at the last moment, at any rate, she appears to 
have thought the time for action premature. A few 
days before the declaration of war she invited me to a 
farewell lunch, which was somewhat remarkable, as 
we both knew that in a very few days we should be 
enemies. After lunch I took the opportunity of telling 
her that I likewise was aware of the situation, but that 
''the Bulgarians would be in Bukharest before the 
Rumanians reached Budapest." She entered into the 
conversation very calmly, being of a very frank nature 
and not afraid of hearing the truth. A few days later 
a letter was opened at the censor's office from a lady- 
in-waiting who had been present at the lunch. It 
was evidently not intended for our eyes ; it contained a 
description of the dejeuner fort embetant, with some 
unflattering remarks about me. 

Queen Marie never lost her hope in a final victory. 
She did not, perhaps, agree with Bratianu in all his 
tactics, but a declaration of war on us was always an 
item on her program. Even in the distressing days 
of their disastrous defeat she always kept her head 
above water. One of the Queen's friends told me 
afterward that when our armies, from south, north, and 
west, were nearing Bukharest, when day and night 
the earth shook with the ceaseless thunder of the guns, 
the Queen quietly went on with her preparations for 
departure, and was firmly persuaded that she would 
return as "Empress of all the Rumanians." I have 
been told that after the taking of Bukharest Bratianu 
collapsed altogether, and it was Queen Marie who 
comforted and encouraged him. Her English blood 
always asserted itself. After we had occupied Walla- 
chia I received absolutely reliable information from 
England, according to which she had telegraphed to 


King George from Jassy, recommending ''her little 
but courageous people" to his further protection. 
After the Peace of Bukharest strong pressure was 
brought to bear on me to effect the abdication of the 
King and Queen. It would not in any way have 
altered the situation, as the Entente would naturally 
have reinstated them when victory was gained; but I 
opposed all such efforts, not for the above reason, 
which I could not foresee, but from other motives, 
to be mentioned later, although I was perfectly certain 
that Queen Marie would always remain our enemy. 

The declaration of war created a very uncomfortable 
situation for all Austro-Hungarians and Germans. I 
came across several friends in the Austro-Hungarian 
colony who had been beaten by the Rumanian soldiers 
with the butt ends of their rifles on their way to prison. 
I saw wild scenes of panic and flight that were both gro- 
tesque and revolting, and the cruel sport lasted for days. 

In Vienna all subjects of an enemy state were ex- 
empt from deportation. In my capacity as Minister I 
ordered reprisals on Rumanian citizens, as there was 
no other means to relieve the fate of our poor refugees. 
As soon as the neutral Powers notified that the treat- 
ment had become more humane, they were set free. 

If we showed ourselves at the windows or in the 
garden of the Embassy the crowd scoffed and jeered 
at us, and at the station, when we left, a young official 
whom I asked for information simply turned his back 
on me. 

A year and a half later I was again in Bukharest. 
The tide of victory had carried us far and we came to 
make peace. We were again subjects of interest to 
the crowds in the streets, but in very different fashion. 
A tremendous ovation awaited us when we appeared in 
the theater, and I could not show myself in the street 
without having a crowd of admirers in my wake. 


Before all this occurred, and when war was first 
declared, the members of the embassy, together with 
about one hundred and fifty persons belonging to the 
Austro-Hungarian colony, including many children, 
were interned, and spent ten very unpleasant days, 
as we were not sure whether we should be released or 
not. We had occasion during that time to witness 
three Zeppelin raids over Btikharest, which, seen in the 
wonderful moonlit, cloudless nights under the tropi- 
cal sky, made an unforgetable impression on us. 

I find the following noted in my diary : 

''Bukharest, August, igi6. 

**The Rumanians have declared war on my wife and 
daughter, too. A deputation composed of two officials 
from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, in frock-coats 
and top hats, appeared last night at eleven o'clock in 
my villa at Sinaia. My wife was roused out of her 
sleep, and by the light of a single candle — more is for- 
bidden on account of the Zeppelin raids — they informed 
her that Rumania had declared war on us. 

*'As the speaker put it, 'Vous avez declare la guerre.'* 
He then read the whole declaration of war aloud to 
them both. Bratianu sent word to me that he would 
have a special train sent to take my wife and daughter 
and the whole personnel of the embassy to Bukharest. 

''Bukharest, September, igi6. 

''The Rumanians really expected a Zeppelin attack 
at once. So far it has not occurred, and they begin 
to feel more at ease, and say that it is too far for the 
Zeppelins to come all the way from Germany. They 
seem not to be aware that Mackensen has Zeppelins 
in Bulgaria. But who can tell whether they really 
will come? 



Bukkarest, September, igi6. 

Last night a Zeppelin did come. About three 
o'clock we were roused by the shrill police whistles 
giving the alarm. The telephone notified us that a 
Zeppelin had crossed the Danube, and all the church- 
bells began to peal. Suddenly darkness and silence 
reigned, and the whole town, like some great angry 
animal, sullen and morose, prepared for the enemy 
attack. Nowhere was there light or sound. The 
town, with a wonderful starry firmament overhead, 
waited in expectation. Fifteen, twenty minutes went 
by, when suddenly a shot was fired and, as though it 
were a signal, firing broke out in every direction. The 
anti-aircraft guns fired incessantly, and the police, too, 
did their best, firing in the air. But what were they 
firing at? There was absolutely nothing to be seen. 
The searchlights then came into play. Sweeping the 
heavens from east to west, from north to south, they 
search the firmament, but cannot find the Zeppelin. 
Is it really there, or is the whole thing due to excited 
Rumanian nerves? 

Suddenly a sound was heard — the noise of the pro- 
peller overhead. It sounded so near in the clear, 
starry night, we felt we must be able to see it. But 
the noise died away in the direction of Colbroceni. 
Then we heard the first bomb. Like a gust of wind it 
whistled through the air, followed by a crash and an 
explosion. A second and third came quickly after. 
The firing became fiercer, but they can see nothing 
and seem to aim at where the sound comes from. The 
searchlights sway backward and forward. Now one of 
them has caught the airship, which looks like a small 
golden cigar. Both the gondolas can be seen quite 
distinctly, and the searchlight keeps it well in view, 
and now a second one has caught it. It looks as though 


this air cruiser is hanging motionless in the sky, bril- 
liantly lit up by the searchlights right and left. Then 
the guns begin in good earnest. Shrapnel bursts all 
around, a wonderful display of fireworks, but it is 
impossible to say if the aim is good and if the monster 
is in danger. Smaller and smaller grows the Zeppelin, 
climbing rapidly higher and higher, until suddenly 
the miniature cigar disappears. Still the searchlights 
sweep the skies, hoping to find their prey again. 

"Suddenly utter silence reigns. Have they gone? 
Is the attack over? Has one been hit? Forced to 
land? The minutes go by. We are all now on the 
balcony — the women, too — watching the scene. Again 
comes the well-known sound — once heard never for- 
gotten — as though the wind were getting up, then a 
dull thud and explosion. This time it is farther away 
toward the forts. Again the firing breaks out and 
machine-guns bark at the friendly moon; searchlights 
career across the heavens, but find nothing. Again 
there falls a bomb — much nearer this time — and again 
comes the noise of the propellers louder and louder. 
Shrapnel bursts just over the Embassy, and the Zep- 
pelin is over our heads. We hear the noise very dis- 
tinctly, but can see nothing. Again a sudden silence 
everywhere, which has a curious effect after the terrible 
noise. Time passes, but nothing more is heard. The 
first rays of dawn are seen in the east ; the stars slowly 

''A child is heard to cry somewhere, far away; 
strange how clearly it sounds in the silent night. There 
is a feeling as though the terrified town hardly dared 
breathe or move for fear the monster might return. 
And how many more such nights are there in prospect ? 
In the calm of this fairy-like dawn, slowly rising, the 
crying of the child strikes a note of discord, infinitely 
sad. But the crying of the child, does it not find an 


echo in the milHons whom this terrible war has driven 
to desperation? 

''The sun rises Hke a blood-red ball. For some 
hours the Rumanians can take to sleep and gather 
fresh strength, but they know that the Zeppelin's visit 
will not be the last. 

' Bukharest, September, igi6. 

'The press is indignant about the nocturnal attack. 
Bukharest is certainly a fortress, but it should be known 
that the guns no longer are in the forts. It was stated 
in the Adeverul that the heroic resistance put up in 
defense was most successful. That the airship, badly 
damaged, was brought down near Bukharest, and that 
a commission started off at once to make sure whether 
it was an airplane or a Zeppelin ! 


'Bukharest, September, igiO. 

'The Zeppelin returned again this evening and took 
us by surprise. It seemed to come from the other side 
of Plojest, and the sentries on the Danube must have 
missed it. Toward morning the night watch at the 
Embassy, whose duty it is to see that there is no light 
in the house, saw a huge mass descending slowly on the 
Embassy till it almost touched the roof.. It hovered 
there a few minutes, making observations. No one 
noticed it until suddenly the engines started again, 
and it dropped the first bomb close to the Embassy. 
A direct hit was made on the house of the Ambassador 
Jresnea Crecianu, and twenty gendarmes who were 
there were killed. The royal palace was also damaged. 
The government is apparently not satisfied with the 
anti-aircraft forces, but concludes that practice will 
make them perfect. Opportunity for practice will cer- 
tainly not be lacking. 

**Our departure is being delayed by every sort of 


pretext. One moment it seems as though we should 
reach home via Bulgaria. This idea suited Bratianu 
extremely well, as the Bulgarian willingness to grant 
permission was a guaranty that they had no plans of 
attack. But he reckoned in this without his host. 
E. and W. are greatly alarmed because the Rumanians 
intend to detain them, and will probably hang them as 
spies. I have told them, 'Either we all stay here or 
we all start together. No one will be given up.' That 
appears to have somewhat quieted their fears. 

**As might be expected, these nocturnal visits had 
disagreeable consequences for us. The Rumanians 
apparently thought that it was not a question of Zep- 
pelins, but of Austro-Hungarian airships, and that my 
presence in the town would afford a certain protection 
against the attacks; after the first one they declared 
that for every Rumanian killed ten Austrians or Bul- 
garians would be executed, and the hostile treatment 
to which we were subjected grew worse and worse. 
The food was cut down and was terribly bad, and 
finally the water-supply was cut off. With the tropical 
temperature that prevailed and the overcrowding of a 
house that normally was destined to hold twenty 
and now housed one hundred and seventy persons, the 
conditions within the space of twenty-four hours became 
unbearable, and the atmosphere so bad that several 
people fell ill with fever, and neither doctor nor medicine 
was obtainable. Thanks to the energetic intervention 
of the Dutch Ambassador, Herr von Vredenburch, who 
had undertaken to take charge of our state interests, 
it was finally possible to alter the conditions and to 
avert the outbreak of an epidemic." 

It was just about that time that our military attache, 
Lieutenant-Colonel Baron Randa, made a telling 
remark. One of our Rumanian slave-drivers was in the 


habit of paying us a daily visit and talking in the 
bombastic fashion the Rumanians adopted when boast- 
ing of their impending victories. The word * * Macken- 
sen" occurred in Randa's answer. The Rumanian 
was surprised to hear the name, unknown to him, 
and said : 

*'Qu'est-ce que c'est que ce Mackensen? Je connais 
beaucoup d'Allemands, mais je n'ai jamais fait la con- 
naissance de M. Mackensen." 

**Eh bien," replied Randa, patting him on the 
shoulder, "vous la ferez cette connaissance, je vous en 

Three months after that Mackensen had occupied 
all Wallachia and had his headquarters at Bukharest. 
By that time, therefore, his name must have been 
more familiar to our Rumanian friend. 

At last we set off for home via Russia and had a very 
interesting journey lasting three weeks, via Kieff, 
Petersburg, Sweden, and Germany. To spend three 
weeks in a train would seem very wearisome to many; 
but as everything in this life is a matter of habit, we 
soon grew so accustomed to it that when we arrived in 
Vienna there were many of us who could not sleep 
the first few nights in a proper bed, as we missed the 
shaking of the train. Meanwhile, we had every com- 
fort on the special train, and variety as well, especially 
when, on Bratianu's orders, we were detained at a 
little station called Baratinskaja, • near Kiefi[. The 
reason of this was never properly explained, but it was 
probably owing to difficulties over the departure of the 
Rumanian Ambassador in Sofia and to the wish to 
treat us as hostages. The journey right through the 
enemy country was remarkable. Fierce battles were 
just then being fought in Galicia, and day and night 
we passed endless trains conveying gay and smiling 
soldiers to the front, and others returning full of pale, 


bandaged, wounded men, whose groans we heard as we 
passed them. We were greeted everywhere in friendly- 
fashion by the population, and there was not a trace 
of the hatred we had experienced in Rumania. Every- 
thing that we saw bore evidence of the strictest order 
and discipline. None of us could think it possible that 
the Empire was on the eve of a revolution, and when the 
Emperor Francis Joseph questioned me on my return 
as to whether I had reason to believe that a revolution 
would occur, I discountenanced the idea most em- 

This did not please the old Emperor. He said after- 
ward to one of his suite, ''Czernin has given a correct 
account of Rumania, but he must have been asleep 
when he passed through Russia." 


The development of Rumanian affairs during the war 
occurs in three phases, the first of which was in King 
Carol's reign. Then neutrality was guaranteed. On 
the other hand, it was not possible during those months 
to secure Rumania's co-operation, because we, in the 
first period of the war, were so unfavorably situated 
in a military sense that public opinion in Rumania 
would not voluntarily have consented to a war at our 
side, and, as already mentioned, such forcible action 
would not have met with the King's approval. 

In the second phase of the war, dating from King 
Carol's death to our defeat at Luck, conditions were 
quite different. In this second phase were included 
the greatest military successes the Central Powers 
obtained altogether. The downfall of Serbia and the 
conquest of the whole of Poland occurred during this 
period, and, I repeat, in those months we could have 
secured the active co-operation of Rumania. Never- 


theless, I must make it clearly understood here that 
if the political preliminaries for a like intervention 
on the part of Rumania were not undertaken, the fault 
must not be ascribed to the then Minister of Foreign 
Affairs, but to the vis major which opposed the project 
under the form of a Hungarian veto. As previously- 
stated, Majorescu, as well as Marghiloman, would only 
have given his consent to co-operation if Rumania 
had been given a slice of the Hungarian state. Thanks 
to the attitude of absolute refusal observed at the 
Ballplatz, the territory in question was never definitely 
decided on, but the idea probably was Transylvania 
and a portion of the Bukowina. I cannot say whether 
Count Burian, if he had escaped other influences, 
would have adopted the plan, but certain it is that, 
however ready and willing he was to act, he would never 
have carried out the plan against the Hungarian 
Parliam.ent. According to the Constitution, the Hun- 
garian Parliament is sovereign in the Hungarian state, 
and without the use of armed means Hungary could 
never have been* induced to cede any part of her 

It is obvious, however, that it would have been 
impossible during the World War to have stirred up an 
armed conflict between Vienna and Budapest. My 
then German colleague, von dem Busche, entirely 
agreed with me that Hungary ought to make some 
territorial sacriflces in order to encourage Rumania's 
intervention. I firmly believe that then, and similarly 
before the Italian declaration of war, a certain pressure 
was brought to bear direct on Vienna by Berlin to this 
end — a pressure which merely contributed to strengthen 
and intensify Tisza's opposition. For Germany, the 
question was far simpler; she fiad drawn payment for 
her great gains from a foreign source. The cession of 
the Bukowina might possibly have been effected, as 


Sturgkh did not object, but that alone would not have 
satisfied Rumania. 

It was quite clear that the opposition to the ceding of 
Transylvania originated in Hungary. But this opposi- 
tion was not specially Tisza's, for whichever of the 
Hungarian politicians might have been at the head of 
the Cabinet would have adopted the same standpoint. 

I sent at the time a confidential messenger to Tisza, 
enjoining him to explain the situation and begging 
him in my name to make the concession. Tisza treated 
the messenger with great reserve, and wrote me a letter 
stating once for all that the voluntary session of Hun- 
garian territory was out of the question — ''Whoever 
attempts to seize even one square meter of Hungarian 
soil will be shot." 

There was nothing to be done. And still I think 
that this was one of the most important phases of the 
war, which, had it been properly managed, might have 
influenced the final result. The military advance on 
the flank of the Russian army would have been, in the 
opinion of our military chiefs, an advantage not to be 
despised, and through it the clever break through at 
Gorlitz would have had some results; but as it was 
Gorlitz was a strategical trial of strength without any 
lasting effect. 

The repellent attitude adopted by Hungary may be 
accounted for in two ways: the Hungarians, to begin 
with, were averse to giving up any of their own ter- 
ritory, and, secondly, they did not believe — even to 
the very last — ^that Rumania would remain permanently 
neutral or that sooner or later we would be forced to 
fight against Rumania unless we in good time had 
carried her with us. In this connection Tisza always 
maintained his optimism, and to the very last moment 
held to the belief that Rumania would not dare take 
it upon herself to attack us. This is the only reason 


that explains why the Rumanians surprised us so much 
by their invasion of Transylvania and by being able 
to carry off so much rich booty. I would have been 
able to take much better care of the many Austrians 
and Hungarians living in Rumania — whose fate was 
terrible after the declaration of war, which took them 
also by surprise — if I had been permitted to draw their 
attention more openly and generally to the coming 
catastrophe; but in several of his letters Tisza implored 
me not to create a panic, ''which would bring incal- 
culable consequences with it." As I neither did, nor 
could, know how far this secrecy was in agreement 
with our military counter-preparations, I was bound to 
observe it. Apparently, Burian believed my reports 
to a certain extent; at any rate, for some time before 
the declaration of war he ordered all the secret docu- 
ments and the available money to be conveyed to 
Vienna, and intrusted to Holland the care of our 
citizens ; but Tisza told me long after that he considered 
my reports of too pessimistic a tendency, and was afraid 
to give orders for the superfluous evacuation of Tran- 

After the unexpected invasion, the waves of panic 
and rage ran high in the Hungarian Parliament. The 
severest criticism was heaped upon me, as no one 
doubted that the lack of preparation was due to my 
false reports. Here Tisza was again himself when, 
in a loud voice, he shouted out that it was untrue; 
my reports were correct; I had warned them in time 
and no blame could be attached to me, and thus took 
upon himself the just blame. Fear was unknown to 
him, and he never tried to shield himself behind any 
one. When I arrived back in Vienna after a journey 
of some weeks in Russia, and only then heard of the 
incident, I took the opportunity to thank Tisza for the 
honorable and loyal manner in which he had defended 


my cause. He replied with the ironical smile char- 
acteristic of him that it was simply a matter of course. 

But for an Austro-Hungarian official it was by no 
means such a matter of course. We have had so many 
cowards on the Ministerial benches, so many men who 
were brave when dealing with their subordinates, 
but toadied to their superiors, and were intimidated 
by strong opposition, that a man like Tisza, who was 
such a contrast to these others, has a most refreshing 
and invigorating effect. The Rumanians attempted 
several times to make the maintenance of their neu- 
trality contingent on territorial concessions. I was 
always opposed to this, and at the Ballplatz they were 
of the same opinion. The Rumanians would have 
appropriated these concessions and simply attacked 
us later to obtain more. On the other hand, it seemed 
to me that to gain military co-operation a cession of 
territory would be quite in order, since, once in the field, 
the Rumanians could not draw back and their fate 
would be permanently bound up with ours. 

Finally, the third phase comprises the comparatively 
short period between our defeat at Luck and the out- 
break of the war in Rumania, and was simply the 
death throes of neutrality. 

War was in the air and could be foreseen with cer- 

As was to be expected, the inefficient diplomacy 
displayed in the preparations for the World War brought 
down severe criticism of our diplomatic abilities, and 
if the intention at the Ballplatz was to bring about a 
war, it cannot be denied that the preparations for it 
were most inadequate. 

Criticism was not directed toward the Ballplatz only, 
but entered into further matters, such as the qualifi- 
cations of the individual representatives in foreign 
countries. I remember an article in one of the 


most widely read Viennese papers, which drew a 
comparison between the "excellent" Ambassador at 
Sofia and almost all of the others; that is, all those 
whose posts were in countries that either refused their 
co-operation or even already were in the field against us. 

In order to prevent any misunderstanding, I wish 
to state here that in my opinion our then Ambassador 
to Sofia, Count Tarnowski, was one of the best and 
most competent diplomats in Austria-Hungary, but 
that the point of view from which such praise was 
awarded to him was in itself totally false. Had Count 
Tarnowski been in Paris, London, or Rome, these states, 
in spite of his undeniable capabilities, would not have 
adopted a different attitude; while, on the other hand, 
there are numbers of distinguished members of the 
diplomatic corps who would have carried out his task 
at Sofia just as well as Count Tarnowski. 

In other words, I consider it is making an unwarrant- 
able demand to expect that a representative in a 
foreign land should have a leading influence on the 
policy of the state to which he is accredited. What 
may be demanded of a diplomatic representative is a 
correct estimate of the situation. The ambassador 
must know what the government of the state where 
he is will do. A false diagnosis is discreditable. But 
it is impossible for a representative, whoever he may be, 
to obtain such power over a foreign state as to be able 
to guide the policy of that state into the course desired 
by him. The policy of a state will invariably be sub- 
servient to such objects as the government of that period 
deems vital, and will always be influenced by factors 
which are quite outside the range of the foreign repre- 

In what manner a diplomatic representative obtains 
his information is his own affair. He should endeavor 
to establish intercourse, not only with a certain class 


of society, but also with the press, and also to keep 
in touch with other classes of the population. 

One of the reproaches made to the *'old regime'* 
was the assumed preference for aristocrats in diplomacy. 
This was quite a mistake. No preference was shown 
for the aristocracy, but it lay in the nature of the career 
that wealth and social polish were assets in the exercise 
of its duties. An attache had no salary. He was, 
therefore, expected to have a tolerably good income 
at home in order to be able to live conformably to his 
rank when abroad. This system arose out of necessity, 
and was also due to the unwillingness of the authorities 
to raise salaries in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. 
The consequence was that only sons of wealthy parents 
could adopt such a career. I once told some delegates 
who interviewed me in connection with the subject 
that a change of the system depended entirely on 
themselves and their increased munificence. 

A certain amount of social polish was just as necessary 
for diplomats of the old regime as was the requisite 
allowance for their household and a knowledge of 
foreign languages. So long as courts exist in Europe, 
court life will always be the center of all social life, 
and diplomats must have the entry of such circles. 
A young man who does not know whether to eat with his 
fork or his knife would play a sorry part there — his 
social training is not an indifferent matter. Preference 
is, therefore, not given to the aristocracy, but to young 
men of wealth familiar with European social form. 

That does not mean that a diplomat is to consider 
it his duty only to show himself at all the parties 
and fetes given by the upper ten thousand, but it is 
one of his duties, as at such places he might gain infor- 
mation unobtainable elsewhere. A diplomat must be 
in touch with all sources from which he can glean 


Individual capabilities and zeal will naturally play a 
great part; but the means that a government places 
at the disposition of its foreign missions are also of the 
highest importance. 

There are people in the East — I do not know whether 
to say in contradistinction to the West — who are not 
immune to the influence of gold. In Rumania, for 
instance, Russia, before the war, had completely under- 
mined the whole country and had lavished millions 
long before the war in the hope of an understanding 
with that country. Most of the newspapers were 
financed by Russians, and numbers of the leading 
politicians were bound by Russian interests, whereas 
neither Germany nor Austria-Hungary had made any 
such preparations. Thus it happened that, on the 
outbreak of war, Russia was greatly in advance of 
the Central Powers, an advance that was all the more 
difficult to overtake as from the first day of war Russia 
opened still wider the flood-gates of her gold and 
inundated Rumania with rubles. 

If the fact that the scanty preparation for war is a 
proof of how little the Central Powers reckoned on 
such a contingency, it may, on the other hand, explain 
away much apparent inactivity on the part of their 
representatives. Karl Furstenberg, my predecessor 
at Bukharest, whose estimate of the situation was a 
just one, demanded to have more funds at his disposal, 
which was refused at Vienna on the plea that there was 
no money. After the war began the Ministry stinted 
us no longer, but it was too late then for much to be 

Whether official Russia, four weeks in advance, had 
really counted on the assassination of the Archduke 
and the outbreak of a war ensuing therefrom remains 
an open question. I will not go so far as to assert it 
for a fact, but one thing is certain, that Russia within a 


measurable space of time had prepared for war as 
being inevitable and had endeavored to secure Ru- 
mania's co-operation. When the Tsar was at Con- 
stanza a month before the drama at Sarajevo, his 
Minister of Foreign Affairs, Sassonoff, paid a visit to 
Bukharest. When there, he and Bratianu went on a 
walking tour together to Transylvania. I did not 
hear of this tactless excursion until it was over, but I 
shared Berchtold's surprise at such a proceeding on 
the part of both Ministers. 

I once, in 19 14, overheard by chance a conversation 
between two Russians. It was at the Hotel Capsa, 
known later as a resort for anti-Austrians. They were 
sitting at the table next to mine in the restaurant and 
were speaking French quite freely and openly. They 
appeared to be on good terms with the Russian Ambas- 
sador and were discussing the impending visit of the 
Tsar to Constanza. I discovered later that they were 
officers in mufti. They agreed that the Emperor Fran- 
cis Joseph could not live very much longer, and that 
when his death occurred and a new ruler came to the 
throne it would be a favorable moment for Russia to 
declare war on us. 

They were evidently exponents of the ''loyal'* 
tendency that aimed at declaring war on us without 
a preceding murder; and I readily believe that the 
majority of men in Petersburg who were eager for war 
held the same view. 



MY appointment as Minister of Foreign Affairs was 
thought by many to indicate that the Emperor 
Charles was carrying out the poHtical wishes of his 
uncle Ferdinand. Although it had been the Arch- 
duke's intention to have made me his Minister of 
Foreign Affairs, my appointment to the post by the 
Emperor Charles had nothing to do with that plan. 
It was due, above all, to his strong desire to get rid of 
Count Burian and to the lack of other candidates whom 
he considered suitable. The Red Book that was pub- 
lished by Count Burian after the outbreak of war with 
Rumania may have attracted the Emperor's attention 
to me. 

Although the Emperor, while still Archduke, was for 
several years my nearest neighbor in Bohemia — he was 
stationed at Brandeis, on the Elbe — we never became 
more closely acquainted. In all those years he was 
not more than once or twice at my house, and they 
were visits of no poHtical significance. It was not 
until the first winter of the war, when I went from 
Rumania to the headquarters of Teschen, that the 
then Archduke invited me to^ make the return jour- 
ney with him. During this railway journey that 
lasted several hours politics formed the chief subject 
of conversation, though chiefly concerning Rumania 


and the Balkan questions. In any case I was never 
one of those who were in the Archduke's confidence, 
and my call to the Ballplatz came as a complete 

At my first audience, too, we conversed at great 
length on Rumania and on the question whether the 
war with Bukharest could have been averted or not. 

The Emperor was then still under the influence of 
our first peace offer so curtly rejected by the Entente. 
At the German headquarters at Pless, where I arrived 
a few days later, I found the prevailing atmosphere 
largely influenced by the Entente's answer. Hinden- 
burg and Ludendorff, who were apparently opposed to 
Burian's demarche for peace, merely remarked to me 
that a definite victory presented a possibility of ending 
the war, and the Emperor William said that he had 
offered his hand in peace, but that the Entente had 
given him a slap in the face, and there was nothing for 
it now but war to the uttermost. 

It was at this time that the question of the unre- 
stricted U-boat warfare began to be mooted. At 
first it was the German navy only, and Tirpitz in par- 
ticular, who untiringly advocated the plan. Hohen- 
lohe,^ who, thanks to his excellent connections, was 
always very well informed, wrote, several weeks before 
the fateful decision was taken, that the German navy 
was determined and bent on that aim. Bethmann 
and Zimmermann were both decidedly against it. It 
was entirely in keeping with the prudent wisdom of the 
former not to risk such experiments; Bethmann was 
an absolutely dependable, honorable, and capable 
partner, but the unbounded growth of the military 
autocracy must be imputed to his natural tendency to 
conciliate. He was powerless against Ludendorff and 

1 The Ambassador, Gottfried, Prince Hohenlohe-Schillingsfurst. 



little by little was turned aside by him. My first 
visit to Berlin afforded me the opportunity of thor- 
oughly discussing the U-boat question with the Im- 
perial Chancellor, and we were quite agreed in our 
disapproval of that method of warfare. At all events, 
Bethmann pointed out that such essentially military 
matters should in the first instance be left to military 
decision, as they alone were able to form a coiTect 
estimate of the result, and these reflections made me 
fear from the very first that all reasonable political 
scruples would be upset by military arguments. On 
this my first visit to Berlin, when this question naturally 
was the dominating one, the Chancellor explained to me 
how difficult his position was, because the military 
parties, both on land and at sea, declared that if the 
unrestricted U-boat warfare were not carried out they 
would not be able to guarantee the western front. 
They thus brought an iron pressure to bear on him, 
for how could he, the Chancellor, undertake to guaran- 
tee that the western front could hold out ? As a matter 
of fact, the danger of introducing the unrestricted 
U-boat campaign became greater and greater, and the 
reports sent by Hohenlohe left no doubt as to the 
further development of affairs in Berlin. 
On January 12th he reported as follows: 

The question of the extension of the U-boat warfare, as your 
Excellency is aware from the last discussions in Berlin, becomes 
daily more acute. 

On the one hand, all leading military and naval authorities 
insist on making use of this means as speedily as possible, as they 
declare it will end the war much more rapidly; on the other hand, 
all statesmen have grave fears as to what effect it will have on 
America and other neutrals. 

The Supreme Military Command declares that a new offensive on 
a very large scale is immin^it in the west and that the armies which 
are to resist this attack will not be able to understand why the navy 
should not do all that lies in its power to prevent, or at any rate to 


decrease, the reserves and ammunition being sent to our adversaries. 
The absence of co-operation on the part of the navy in the terrible 
battles the troops on the western front will again have to face will 
have a most injtirious effect on the morale. 

The objections put forward as to the effect the proceeding might 
have on America are met in military circles by the assumption 
that America will take good care not to go to war; that she, in fact, 
would not be able to do so. The unfortunate failure of the United 
States military machine in the conflict with Mexico clearly proves 
what is to be expected from America in that respect. Even a possible 
breaking off relations with America does not necessarily signify war. 

Meanwhile all the leading naval authorities reassert that they 
may be reUed on, even though they are not considered capable of 
crushing England, at least to be able, before America can come in, 
so to weaken the British Island Empire that only one desire will be 
left to English politicians, that of seating themselves with us at the 
Conference table. 

To this the Chancellor asked who would give him a guaranty 
that the navy were right and in what position should we find our- 
selves in case the admirals were mistaken, whereupon the Admiralty 
promptly asked what sort of position the Chancellor expected to 
find when autumn arrived without having made a proper use of the 
U-boats and we found ourselves, through exhaustion, compelled to 
beg for peace. 

And thus the scales went up and down, weighing the chances 
for or against the U-boat war, and there was no possibility of 
positively determining which decision was the right one. 

Doubtless the German government in the near future will be 
constrained to take up a definite standpoint respecting the question, 
and it is obvious — whatever the decision may be — that we also shall 
be largely involved. Nevertheless, it appears to me that when the 
German government does approach us in that connection we should 
act with all possible reserve. As the matter now stands, a positive 
decision as to which course is the right one is not possible. I have 
therefore thought it inadvisable to take side definitely with either 
party and thus remove much of the responsibility from the German 
government and render it possible for them to lay it upon us. 
The Imperial and Royal Ambassador, 


The concluding passage of the above-cited report had 
already been anticipated by me in a telegraphic com- 


munication in which I begged the Ambassador with all 
possible energy to urge the political arguments opposed 
to the unrestricted U-boat warfare, which is proved by 
a telegram from Hohenlohe on January 13th as follows: 

Reply to yesterday's telegram No. 15. 

In accordance with the telegram mentioned, and after discussing 
it with Baron Flotow, I went to the Secretary of State— not being 
able to see the Chancellor to-day — and in conformity with your 
Excellency's intentions called his attention to the fact that we should 
participate in the results of the U-boat war just as much as Ger- 
many, and that, therefore, the German government is boimd to 
listen to us also. All the leading German statesmen know that your 
Excellency, during your stay here, expressed yourself as opposed 
to the movement, but that I had come once more as your Excel- 
lency's representative to repeat the warning against too hasty action. 
I further emphasized all the arguments against the U-boat war- 
fare, but will not trouble your Excellency with a repetition of them, 
nor yet with the counter-arguments, already known to your Ex- 
cellency, that were put forward by the Secretary. I gave a 
brief summary of both these standpoints in my yesterday's report 
No. 6 P. 

Herr Zimmermann, however, laid special stress on the fact that 
the information he was receiving convinced him more and more that 
America, especially after the Entente's answer to Mr. Wilson, which 
was in the nature of an insult, would very probably not allow it to 
come to a breach with the Central Powers. 

I did all I possibly could to impress upon him the responsibility 
Germany was taking for herself and for us by her decision in this 
question, pointing out very particularly that before any decision was 
arrived at our opinion from a nautical-technical standpoint must also 
be heard, in which the Secretary of State fully concun-ed. 

I have the feeling that the idea of carrying out the U-boat warfare 
is more and more favorably received, and your Excellency had the 
same impression also when in Berlin. The last word as to the final 
attitude to be adopted by the German government will no doubt 
come from the military side. 

In conformity with the instructions received, / will nevertheless 
uphold with all firmness the political urguments against the U-boat 

Baron Flotow will have occasion to meet the Secretary of State 
this afternoon. 


I had sent Baron Flotow, a chief of department, to 
Berlin at the same time, in order that he might support 
all Hohenlohe's efforts and spare no pains to induce 
Germany to desist from her purpose. 

Flotow sent me the following report on January 15th: 

After a two days' stay in Berlin my impression is that the question 
of the unrestricted U-boat warfare has again been brought to the 
front by the leading men in the German Empire. This question — 
according to Herr Zimmermann — under conditions of the greatest 
secrecy where the public is concerned, is now under debate between 
the heads of the army and navy and the Foreign Office; they insist 
on a decision. For if the unrestricted U-boat warfare is to be opened 
it must be at a time when, in view of the vast impending Anglo- 
French offensive on the western front, it will make itself felt. The 
Secretary of State mentioned the month of February. 

I wish in the following account to siunmarize the reasons put 
forward by the Germans for the justification of the unrestricted 
U-boat warfare: 

Time is against us and favors the Entente; if, therefore, the 
Entente can keep up the desire for war there will be still less prospect 
of our obtaining a peace on our own terms. The enemy's last note 
to Wilson is again a striking example of their war energy. 

It will be impossible for the Central Powers to continue the war 
after 191 7 with any prospect of success. Peace must, therefore, 
unless it finally has to be proposed by the enemy, be secured in the 
course of this year, which means that we must enforce it. 

The military situation is tmfavorable owing to the impending 
Anglo-French offensive, which, it is presumed, will open with great 
force, as in the case of the last offensive on the Somme. To m.eet 
the attack, troops will have to be withdrawn from other fronts. 
Consequently, an offensive against Russia with intent to bring that 
enemy to his knees, which perhaps a year ago would have been 
possible, can no longer be reckoned on. 

If, therefore, the possibility of enforcing a decision in the east 
becomes less and less, an effort must be made to bring it about in 
the west, and to do it at a time when the unrestricted U-boat 
warfare would affect the coming Anglo-French offensive by impeding 
the transport of troops and munitions sailing under a neutral flag. 

In estimating the effect on England of the unrestricted U-boat 
warfare, there will be not only the question of hindering the trans- 
port of provisions, but also of curtailing the traffic to such a degree 


as would render it impossible for the English to continue the war. 
In Italy and in France this will be felt no less severely. The neutrals, 
too, will be made to suffer, which, however, might serve as a pretext 
to bring about peace. 

America will hardly push matters further than breaking off 
diplomatic relations; we need not, therefore, count for certain on 
a war with the United States. 

It must not be overlooked that the United States — as was the 
case in regard to Mexico — are not well prepared for war, that their 
one anxiety is Japan. Japan would not allow a European war with 
America to pass unheeded. 

But even if America were to enter the war it would be three to 
four months before she could be ready, and in that space of time 
peace must have been secured in Europe. According to the estimate 
of certain experts (among others, some Dutch com merchants), 
England has provisions sufficient for only six weeks, or three months 

at the outside. 

It would be possible to carry on the U-boat warfare on England 
from fifteen bases in the North Sea, so that the passage of a large 
vessel through to England would he hardly conceivable. Traffic in the 
Channel, even if not entirely stopped, would be very limited, as 
traveling conditions in France exclude the possibility of suitable 

And if the unrestricted U-boat warfare once were started, the 
terror caused by it (the sinking of the vessels without warning) 
would have such an effect that most vessels would not dare to 
put to sea. 

The above already hints at the rejoinder to be put forward to the 
arguments advanced by us against the opening of the unrestricted 
U-boat warfare, and also combats the view that the corn-supply from 
the Argentine is not at the present moment so important for the 
United States as would be a prompt opening of the U-boat campaign, 
which would mean a general stoppage of all traffic. 

The fact that America would not be ready for war before the end 
of three months does not exclude the possibility that it might even 
be as long as six or eight months, and that she therefore might join 
in the European war at a time when, without playing our last card, 
it might be possible to end it in a manner that we could accept. It 
must not be forgotten, however, that in America we have to do with 
an Anglo-Saxon race, which — once it had decided on war — will enter 
on it with energy and tenacity, as England did, who, though impre- 
pared for war as to military matters, can confront to-day the Ger- 
mans with an anny of millions that commands respect. I cannot^ 


with certainty make any statement as to the Japanese danger to 
America at a time when Japan is bound up with Russia and England 
through profitable treaties and Germany is shut out from that part 
of the world. 

Among other things I referred to the great hopes entertained of 
the Zeppehns as an efficient weapon of war. 

Herr Zimmermann said to me: "Believe me, our fears are no 
less than yours; they have given me many sleepless nights. There 
is no positive certainty as to the result; we can only make our 
calc\ilations. We have not yet arrived at any decision. Show nie a 
way to obtain a reasonable peace and I would be the first to reject 
the idea of the U-boat warfare. As matters now stand, both I and 
several others have almost been converted to it." 

But whether, in the event of the ruthless U-boat warfare being de- 
cided on, it would be notified in some way, has not yet been decided. 

Zimmermann told me he was considering the advisability of 
approaching Wilson, and, while referring to the contemptuous 
attitude of the Entente in the peace question, give the President 
an explanation of the behavior of the German government, and 
request him, for the safety of the Ufe and property of American 
citizens, to indicate the steamers and shipping fines by which traffic 
between America and other neutrals could be maintained. 

Flotow, M.P. 

Vienna, January 15, 1917 ' 

On January 20th Zimmermann and Admiral Holtzen- 
aorff arrived in Vienna, and a council was held, presided 
over by the Emperor. Besides the three above-men- 
tioned, Count Tisza, Count Clam-Martinic, Admiral 
Haus, and I were also present. Holtzendorff expounded 
his reasons, which I recapitulate below. With the 
exception of Admiral Haus, no one gave unqualified 
consent. All the arguments which appear in the official 
documents and ministerial protocols were advanced, 
but did not make the slightest impression on the 
German representatives. The Emperor, who took no 
part in the debate, finally declared that he would decide 
later. Under his auspices a further conference was 
held in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs at two o'clock; 
the report is as follows: 


keport of a conference held January 20, 191 7, in the Imperial and 
Royal Ministry of Home and Foreign Affairs. Members: Doctor 
Zimmermann, Secretary of State of the German Foreign Affairs 
Department; Admiral von Holtzendorff, Chief of the German Naval 
Staff; Count Czemin, Imperial and Royal Minister of Foreign 
Affairs; Count Tisza, Royal Hungarian Prime Minister; Count 
Clam-Martinic, Imperial and Royal Prime Minister; Admiral Haus, 
the German naval attache in Vienna; Baron von Freyburg, the 
Imperial and Royal naval attache ir Berlin; Count B. Colloredo- 

On January 20th a discussion took place in the Ministry of Foreign 
Affairs on the question of estabHshing unrestricted U-boat warfare. 

As evidenced by Admiral von Holtzendorff 's statements, the Ger- 
man naval authorities hold the standpoint that there exists an 
absolute necessity for the quickest possible inaugiu-ation of an 
unrestricted U-boat campaign. The arguments employed in sup- 
port of this thesis are known from the reports of the Imperial and 
Royal Ambassador in BerHn (report of 1/12/17 No. 6/P and tele- 
gram of 1/13 No. 22), and may be summarized in the following 
sentences: Lack of time, decreasing human material in the Central 
Powers, progressive deterioration of the harvest, impending Anglo- 
French offensive on the western front with improved and increased 
means for fighting, and the necessity arising therefrom to prevent 
or at least check the reinforcements required for such undertaking, 
the impossibility of obtaining a decision on land, the necessity of 
raising the morale of the troops by ruthlessly obtained results, and 
the use of every available means in war, certainty of the success 
of an imrestricted U-boat warfare in view of provisions in England 
being sufficient for only two to three months, as well as the stoppage 
of the munitions output and industrial production owing to the 
lack of raw material, the impossibility of supplying coal to France 
and Italy, etc., etc. 

Concerning the carrymg out of the plan, the German navy owns 
at present for that purpose 1 20 U-boats of the latest type. In view 
of the great success achieved by the U-boats at the beginning of the 
war, when there were only nineteen of an antiquated type, the 
present increased numbers of the vessels offer a safe guaranty of 


February ist is suggested on the part of the Germans as the date 
on which to start the unrestricted U-boat warfare and also to 
announce the blockade of the EngHsh coast and the west coast 
of France. Every vessel disobeying the order will be torpedoed 
without warning. In this manner it is hoped to bring England to 


reason within four months, and it must here be added that Admiral 
von Holtzendorff expressis verbis guaranteed the results. 

As regards the attitude to be taken by the neutrals, leading 
German circles, although aware of the danger, hold optimistic views. 
It is not thought that either the Scandinavian countries or Holland 
will interfere with us, although, in view of the possibility of such 
happening, military precautions have been taken. The measures 
taken on the Dutch and Danish frontiers will, in the opinion of the 
Germans, hold those coimtries in check, and the possibility of 
sharing the fate of Rumania will frighten them. Indeed, it is 
expected that there will be a complete stoppage of all neutral 
shipping, which in the matter of suppHes for England amounts to 
39 per cent, of the cargo space. Meanwhile concessions will be 
granted to the neutrals by fixing a time limit for the withdrawal 
of such of their vessels as may be at sea on the opening day of the 
U-boat warfare. 

With regard to America, the Germans are determined, if at all 
possible, to prevent the United States from attacking the Central 
Powers by adopting a friendly attitude toward America (acting 
upon the proposals made at the time of the Lusitania incident), 
but they are prepared for and await with calmness whatever attitude 
America may adopt. The Germans are, nevertheless, of the opinion 
that the United States will not go so far as making a breach with 
the Central Powers. If that should occur, America would be too 
late and could only come into action after England had been beaten. 
America is not prepared for war, which was clearly shown at the 
time of the Mexican crisis; she Hves in fear of Japan and has to 
fight against agricultural and social difficulties. Besides which, 
Mr. Wilson is a pacifist, and the Germans presume that after his 
election will adopt a still more decided tendency that way, for 
his election will not be due to the anti-German Eastern States, 
but to the co-operation of the Central and Western States that are 
opposed to war, and to the Irish and Germans. These considera- 
tions, together with the Entente's insulting answer to President 
Wilson's peace proposal, do not point to the probability of America 
plunging readily into war. 

These, in brief, are the points of view on which the German 
demand for the immediate start of the unrestricted U-boat warfare 
is based, and which caused the Imperial Chancellor and the Foreign 
Affairs Department to revise their hitherto objective views. 

Both the Austrian Minister of Foreign Affairs and the Hungarian 
Prime Minister pointed out what disastrous consequences would 
ensue from America's intervention, in a military, moral, agricultural, 


and financial sense, and great doubt was expressed of the success 
of a blockade of England. Count Czemin held that the Germans 
overlooked the possibiUty of lowering the consumption in England, 
taking into consideration the fact that since the war consumption 
in the countries of the Central Powers had been reduced by half. 
Further, Count Czemin referred to the very vague and by no means 
convincing data of the German naval authorities. It was also 
debated whether a continuation of the U-boat war to the present 
extent (the destruction on an average of 400,000 tons per month) 
would not be more hkely to achieve the desired end, and if it were 
not more advisable not to play our last and best card until all other 
means had been tried. The possibility of being able to start a ruth- 
less U-boat warfare hung Hke a Damocles's sword over the heads of 
our adversaries, and would perhaps be a more effectual means of 
ending the war than the reckless use of the U-boat as a weapon of 
war, carrying with it the danger of an attack by the neutrals. If the 
effect expected by Germany was not reaUzed, which was within the 
bounds of possibility, we must be prepared to see the desire for war 
in the enemy greatly intensified. However that may be, the vanish- 
ing of the desire for peace must be accepted as an established fact. 
Finally, it was pointed out that the arguments recently put forward 
by the Germans show a complete novum, namely, the danger on the 
western front in view of the great Anglo-French offensive that is 
expected. Whereas formerly it was always said that the attacks 
of the enemy would be repulsed, it is now considered necessary to 
relieve the land army by recklessly bringing the navy into the line of 
action. If these fears are justified, then most certainly should all 
other considerations be put on one side and the risk ensuing from the 
ruthless employment of the U-boats be accepted. Both Count 
Czemin and Count Tisza expressed their grave doubts in this 

To meet the case, the Hungarian Prime Minister pointed out 
the necessity of immediately starting propagandist activities in the 
neutral countries and particularly in America, by which the Central 
Powers' political methods and aims would be presented to them in 
a proper Hght ; and then later, after introducing unrestricted U-boat 
warfare, it would be seen that no other choice was left to the peaceful 
tendencies of the Quadmple Alliance as the means for a speedy 
ending of the struggle between the nations. 

The leaders of the foreign policy- agreed to take the necessary 
steps in that direction, and remarked that certain arrangements had 
already been made. 

Admiral Haus agreed unreservedly with the arguments of the 


German navy, as he declared that no great anxiety need he felt 
as to the HkeUhood of America's joining in with military force, 
and finally pointed out that, on the part of the Entente, a ruthless 
torpedoing of hospital and transport ships had been practised for 
some time past in the Adriatic. The admiral urged that this fact 
be properly recognized and dealt with, to which the Foreign Affairs 
leaders on both sides gave their consent. 

The Austrian Minister of Foreign Affairs, in conclusion, said 
that the definite decision to be made must be left to the conclusions 
arrived at by both sovereigns, whereupon the 26th inst. was fixed 
for a meeting to be held for that purpose. 

After the general discussion, I had a private talk 
with the Emperor, and found that he still had the same 
aversion to that means of warfare and the same fears 
as to the result. We knew, however, that Germany 
had definitely made up her mind to start the campaign 
in any case, and that all our arguments would be of no 
practical value. It remained to be decided whether 
we should join them or not. Owing to the small num- 
ber of our U-boats, our holding aside would not have 
had any great effect on the final issue of the experiment, 
and for a moment I entertained the idea of proposing 
to the Emperor that we should separate from Germany 
on that one point, although I was aware that it might 
lead to the ending of our alliance. But the difficulty 
was that the U-boat effort would also have to be car- 
ried on in the Mediterranean in order that it should 
not lose its effect in the North Sea. If the Mediter- 
ranean remained exempt, the transports would take 
that route and proceed by land via Italy, France, and 
Dover, and thus render the northern U-boat warfare 
of no effect. But in order to carry it on in the Medi- 
terranean, Germany would need our support in the 
Adriatic from Trieste, Pola, and Cattaro. If we allowed 
her at those places it involved us in the campaign, 
and if we refused to let our few U-boats go out, it would 
be attacking Germany in the rear and we should 


become embroiled with her, which would lead to the 
definite severance of the alliance. 

This was again one of those instances that prove 
that when a strong and a weak nation concert in war, 
the weak one cannot desist unless it changes sides 
entirely and enters into war with its former ally. 
None who were in the government would hear of that, 
and with a heavy heart we gave our consent. Bul- 
garia, who was not in this phase of the war, and who 
had kept up diplomatic relations with America, was 
differently situated, being able to stand aside without 
paralyzing the German plans. Apart from this, I 
was already persuaded then that Bulgaria's not joining 
in would make a bad impression on the outside world, 
and would not help her in any way. Although her 
relations with America were maintained up to the 
last, they did not, as a matter of fact, make her fate 

Had we been able to make Germany desist from 
the unrestricted U-boat warfare, the advantage would 
have been very great; whether we joined in or not 
was a matter of indifference viewed from the stand- 
point of our treatment by the Entente, as it proved 
by the instance of Bulgaria. As soon as America 
had declared war on Germany, a conflict with us was 
inevitable in any case, as Austro-Hungarian troops and 
artillery were then on the western front, facing Ameri- 
cans. We were compelled to go to war with America, 
seeing that Germany was already at war with her. 

It was not possible, therefore, for us to remain in a 
state of even nominally peaceful relations with America, 
such as existed between her and Bulgaria to the very- 
end of the war. 

It is not quite clear when Germany really recognized 
the fact that the unrestricted U-boat warfare had no 
effect and was thus a terrible mistake, To the public, 


as well as to the allied Cabinets, the German military 
authorities continued to profess the greatest optimism, 
and when I left my post in April, 191 8, the standpoint 
held in Berlin was still that England would be defeated 
by the naval war. Writing on December 14, 191 7, 
Hohenlohe reported that in competent German circles 
the feeling was thoroughly optimistic. I, however, 
certainly perceived certain signs of doubt beginning 
in some German minds, and Ludendorff in replying to 
the reproaches I made to him said: ''Everything is 
dangerous in war; it is impossible before an operation 
to be sure of the results. I admit that the time limit 
was a mistake, but the final result will show that I 
was right." In order to exculpate themselves all the 
leaders in Germany declared that America would, 
in any case, have gone to war, and that the U-boat had 
merely given the last impetus. Whether this is quite 
true appears doubtful; it cannot either be asserted or 
denied positively. 

The world has become used to looking upon Hinden- 
burg and Ludendorff as one; they belonged together. 
Together they rose to the highest power, to be forcibly 
separated in their fall. In all business transactions 
Ludendorff was in the foreground. He was a great 
speaker, but always in a sharp tone, suggestive of the 
Prussian military system. It usually aroused a scene, 
but he seemed to take nothing amiss, and his anger 
vanished as rapidly as it broke out. Hindenburg's 
retiring modesty made him attractive. Once when 
we were speaking of the photographers who besieged 
every conference in Berlin, the old gentleman remarked : 
* ' I have lived to be seventy and nobody ever thought 
there was anything wonderful about me; now they 
seem all at once to have discovered that I have such an 
interesting head." He was much more staid and quiet 
than Ludendorff, nor was he so sensitive to public 


opinion as the latter. I remember once how Luden- 
dorff, when I exhorted him to yield on the peace ques- 
tion, rejoined with vigor: **The German people wish 
for no peace of renunciation, and I do not intend to 
end by being pelted with stones. The dynasty would 
never survive such a peace." The dynasty has 
departed, the stones have been thrown, and the peace 
of renunciation has become a reality, and is certainly 
more terrible than the gloomiest pessimist could ever 
have believed ! 


The rupture between America and Germany occurred 
on February 3, 191 7. 

The Ambassador, Count Tamowski, remained in 
Washington, but was not received by Wilson, and had 
intercourse with Lansing only. I still hoped to main- 
tain these semi-official relations with America, in case 
America, in breaking off relations with Germany, 
might be content with that and not declare war on her. 
The German government would have preferred our 
breaking off diplomatic relations simultaneously with 

On February 12 th Count Wedel called on me, and his 
request and my settlement of it appear in the following 
telegram to Hohenlohe: 

Vienna, Fehniary 12, 1917. 

To notify Your Excellency. 

Count Wedel has been instructed to submit to me the following 
three requests from his government: 

(i) Count Tarnowski is not to hand over his credentials until the 
situation between Germany and America is clear. 

(2) Count Tarnowski must protest to Mr. Wilson against his 
having tried to make the neutr-als turn against Germany. 

(3) On the outbreak of war with Gennany Count Tarnowski must 
be recalled. 

I have refused the first two items and accepted the last. 


As we should not have been able to prevent Germany 
from beginning the U-boat warfare, the only alternative 
for us was to use all means in our power to maintain 
our relations with America, and thus enable us later 
to play the part of mediator, although this could be for 
only that period during which America, having broken 
off relations, had not yet declared war. My answer 
of March 5, 191 7, to America's request for an explana- 
tion of our standpoint was sent with the object of pre- 
venting America from breaking off relations with us, 
and also to keep from the public the knowledge of our 
divergence from Germany. This will be found noted 
in the appendix. It met with success so far that 
America for a time continued diplomatic relations with 
us; they were not broken off until April 9, 191 7. 

I had a very lively correspondence with Stephen 
Tisza in consequence of m^y answer. I received the 
following letter on March 3d: 

Dear Friend, — In the interests of the cause I can only greatly 
regret that I had no opportunity of appreciating the definite sense 
of our aide-memoire before it was despatched. Apart from other 
less important matters, I cannot conceal my painful surprise that 
we repeatedly and expressly admit having given a promise in our 
Ancona note. I am afraid that we have placed ourselves in a very 
awkward position with Wilson, which so easily could have been 
avoided, as it was not in accordance with my views that we had 
given a promise. 

An expression of opinion is not a promise. Without wishing to 
detract from its moral value, it has nevertheless a different legal 
character, and from the point of view of a third person has no 
legal authority in favor of that person as a promise. 

By unnecessarily having admitted that we gave the Americans 
a promise we admit the existence of obligations on our side to them. 
In spite of the fine and clever argument in our note, it will be easy 
for the Americans to prove that our present procedure cannot be 
reconciled with the previous statement; if the statement was a 
promise, then the American government has the right to look for 
the fulfihnent of it, and we will then be in an awkward predicament. 


I remarked In my notification that I would prefer to omit the admis- 
sion that we had made any promise; there would have been the 
possibility of recurring to it. By placing this weapon in their hands 
we have exposed ourselves to the danger of a checkmate, and I very 
much fear that we shall greatly regret it. 

Naturally this rem^ains between us. But I was constrained to 
pour out my heart to you and justify my request that the text of 
all such important state documents which involve such far-reaching 
consequences may be sent to me in time for me to study and com- 
ment on them. Believe me, it is really in the interest of the cause 
and in every respect can only be for the best. 

In sincere friendship, your devoted Tisza* 


It may be presumed with some semblance of truth that the peace 
wave in America is progressing, and that President Wilson, influ- 
enced thereby, may perhaps be able at any rate to postpone a 
decision of a warlike nature. Even though I may be wrong in my 
presumption, it lies in our interests to avoid for as long as possible 
the rupture of our diplomatic relations with America. 

Therefore the answer to the American aide-memoire, to be de- 
spatched as late as possible, should be so composed as to give it the 
appearance of a meritorious handling of the theme put forward 
on the American side without falling into the trap of the question 
put forward in the aide-memoire. 

If we answer yes, then President Wilson will hardly be able to 
avoid a breach with the Monarchy. If we give a negative answer 
we shall abandon Germany and the standpoint we took up on 
January 31st. 

The handle wherewith to grasp evasion of a clear answer is 
provided by the aide-memoire itself, as it identifies our statements 
in the Ancona and Persia question with the attitude of the German 
note of May 4, 1916. We should, therefore, be quite consistent 
if we, as we did in our note of December 14, 191 5, were to declare 
that we should be governed by our own ideas of justice. 

In our correspondence with the American government respecting 
the Ancona, Persia, and Petrolike questions we treated the concrete 
case always without going deeper into the individual principles of 
legal questions. In our note of December 29, 1915, which con- 
tains the expression of opinion cited in the aide-memoire (it may also 
be noted that our expression of opinion was no pledge, as we had 
promised nothing nor taken any obligation upon oiurselves), the 


Austrian government distinctly stated that they would refer later 
to the difficult international questions connected with the U-boat 

Present war conditions did not appear suited to such a discussion. 
In consequence, however, of the deaUngs of our enemies, events have 
occurred and a state of things been brought about which, on our side 
also, renders a more intense application of the U-boat question 
unavoidable. Our merchantmen in the Adriatic, whenever attain- 
able, were constantly torpedoed without warning by the enemy. 
Our adversaries have thus adopted the standard of the most aggra- 
vated and unrestricted U-boat warfare without the neutrals offering 
any assistance. 

The Entente when laying its mine-fields displayed the same 
ruthlessness toward the free shipping and the lives of neutrals. ^ 

Mines are considered as a recognized weapon for the definite 
protection of the home coast and ports, also as a means of blockading 
an enemy port. But the use made of them as an aggressive factor 
in this war is quite a new feature, for vast areas of open sea on 
the route of the world's traffic were converted into mine-fields 
impassable for the neutrals except at the greatest danger of their 

There is no question but that that is a far greater check to the 
freedom of movement and a greater obstacle to neutral interests 
than estabUshing the unrestricted U-boat warfare within a limited 
and clearly marked out zone, leaving open channels for neutral 
shipping, and by other measures giving due consideration to the 
interests of the neutrals. 

Just at the moment when the President's appeal to the entire 
belligerent world coincided with the spontaneous statement of our 
group, in which we gave a solemn proof of our willingness to con- 
clude a just peace and one acceptable by our enemies, a fresh 
and larger mine-field was laid down in the North Sea on the route 
of the world's traffic, and, casting ridicule on the noble initiative 
of the United States, a war of destruction against our groups of 
Powers was announced by the Entente. 

We urge the great aims that inspired the action of the American 
government : the quickest possible cessation of the fearful slaughter 
of men and the founding of an honorable, lasting, and blessed peace 
by combating with the greatest energy our enemies' furious war for 
conquest. The course we pursue leads to the common aims of our- 
selves and the American government, and we cannot give up the 
hope of finding understanding in the people and the government of 
the United States. TiszA. 


I answered as follows: 

March 5th. 

Dear Friend, — I cannot agree with you. After the first Ancona 
note you veered round and declared in a second note that ''we 
agreed with the German standpoint in the main" — that was an 
obvious yielding and contained a hidden promise. 

I do not think that any legal wiles will dupe the Americans, and 
if we were to deny the promise it would not advance us any farther. 

But, secondly and principally, it is altogether impossible with 
words to make the Americans desist from war if they wish it ; either 
they will make straight for war and then no notes will avail, or they 
will seek a pretext to escape the war danger and will find it in our 

So much for the merits of the matter. 

What you demand is technically impossible. The note was not 
easy to compile. I had to alter it entirely as time went on; his 
Majesty then wished to see it, made some alterations, and sanctioned 
it. Meanwhile Penfield^ importuned me and telegraphed even a 
week ago to America to reassure his people; the Germans, too, had 
to be won over for that particular passage. 

You know how ready I am to discuss important matters with you, 
but ultra posse nemo tenetur — it was physically impossible to upset 
everything again and to expect his Majesty to alter his views. 

In true friendship, your Czernin. 

I thereupon, on March 14th, received the following 
answer from Tisza : 

Dear Friend, — I also note with genuine pleasure the success of 
your American aide-memoire (meaning thereby America's resolve 
not to break off relations with us). But it does not alter my opinion 
that it was a pity to admit that a pledge had been given. It may be 
requited at a later stage of the controversy, and it would have been 
easy not to broach the subject for the moment. 

Do you think me very obstinate? I have not suppressed the final 
word in our retrospective controversy so that you should not think 
me better than I am. 

Au revoir, in true friendship, yourj TiszA. 

Tisza was strongly opposed .to the U-boat warfare, 
and tolerated it onl}^ from reasons of vis major ^ because 

1 Mr. Penfield, American Ambassador to Vienna. 


we could not prevent the German military leaders from 
adopting the measure, and because he, and I, too, were 
convinced that ''not joining in" would have been of 
no advantage to us. 

Not until very much later — in fact, not until after 
the war — did I learn from a reliable source that Ger- 
many, with an incomprehensible misunderstanding of 
the situation, had restricted the building of more 
U-boats during the war. The Secretary of State, 
Capelle, was approached by competent naval technical 
experts, who told him that, by stopping the building 
of all other vessels, a fivefold number of U-boats could 
be built. Capelle rejected the proposal on the pretext 
"that nobody would know what to do with so many 
U-boats when the war was at an end." Germany had, 
as mentioned, one hundred submarines; had she pos- 
sessed five hundred she might have achieved her aims. 

I only heard this in the winter of 1918, but it was 
from a source from which I invariably gleaned correct 

Seldom has any military action called forth such 
indignation as the sinking, without warning, of enemy 
ships. And yet the observer who judges from an 
objective point of view must admit that the waging 
war on women and children was not begun by us, but 
by our enemies when they enforced the blockade. 
Millions have perished in the domains of the Central 
Powers through the blockade, and chiefly the poorest 
and weakest people — the greater part women and 
children — -were the victims. If, to meet the argument, 
it be asserted that the Central Powers were as a 
besieged fortress, and that in 1870 the Germans starved 
Paris in similar fashion, there is certainly some truth 
in the argument. But it is just as true — as stated in 
the note of March 5 th — that in a war on land no regard 
is ever paid to civilians who venture into the war zone, 


and that no reason is apparent why a war at sea should 
be subject to different moral conditions. When a 
town or village is within the range of battle, the fact 
has never prevented the artillery from acting in spite 
of the danger to the women and children. But in 
the present instance, the non-combatants of the enemy 
states who are in danger can easily escape it by not 
undertaking a sea voyage. 

Since the debacle in the winter of 19 18, I have 
thoroughly discussed the matter with English friends 
of long standing, and found that their standpoint was — 
that it was not the U-boat warfare in itself that had 
roused the greatest indignation, but the cruel nature 
of the proceedings so opposed to international law. 
Also, the torpedoing of hospital-ships by the Germans, 
and the firing on passengers seeking to escape, and so on. 
These accounts are flatly contradicted by the Germans, 
who, on their part, have terrible tales to tell of English 
brutality, as instanced by the Baralong episode. 

There have, of course, been individual cases of 
shameful brutality in all the armies; but that such 
deeds were sanctioned or ordered by the German or 
English Supreme Commands I do not believe. 

An inquiry by an international, but neutral, court 
would be the only means of bringing light to bear on 
the matter. 

Atrocities such as mentioned are highly to be con- 
demned, no matter who the perpetrators are; but in 
itself the U-boat warfare was an allowable means of 

The blockade is now admitted to be a permissible 
and necessary proceeding; the unrestricted U-boat 
warfare is stigmatized as a crime against international 
law. That is the sentence passed by might, but not 
by right. In days to come history will judge otherwise. 




THE constitutional procedure which prevails in 
every parliamentary state is ordered so that the 
Minister is responsible to a body of representatives. 
He is obliged to account for what he has done. His 
action is subject to the judgment and criticism of the 
body of representatives. If the majority of that body 
are against the Minister, he must go. 

The control of foreign policy in the Austro-Hun- 
garian Monarchy was in the hands of the delegations. 

Besides which, however, there existed in the Hun- 
garian Constitution a regulation to the effect that the 
Hungarian Prime Minister was responsible to the 
country for the foreign poHcy, and, consequently, the 
"foreign policy of the Monarchy had to be carried out, 
in conjunction, by the then Minister of Foreign Affairs 
in office and the Prime Minister." 

It depended entirely on the personality of the Hun- 
garian Prime Minister how he observed the regulation. 
Already, under Burian, it had become the custom for 
all telegrams and news, even of the most secret nature, 
to be communicated at once to Count Tisza, who then 
brought his influence to bear on all decisions and tacti- 
cal events. Tisza possessed a most extraordinary 
capacity for work. He always found time to occupy 
himself very thoroughly with foreign policy, notwith- 


standing his own numerous departmental duties, and it 
was necessary, therefore, to gain his consent to every 
step taken. The control of our foreign policy was, 
therefore, twofold — both by the delegation and the 
Prime Minister. 

Great as was my esteem and respect for Count 
Tisza and close the friendship between us, still his 
constant supervision and intervention put boundless 
difficulties in the way of the discharge of business. 
It was not easy, even in normal times, to contend with, 
on top of all the existing difficulties that confront a 
Minister of Foreign Affairs; in war, it became an 
impossibility. The unqualified presumption behind 
such twofold government would have been that the 
Hungarian Prime Minister should consider all questions 
from the standpoint of the entire Monarchy, and not 
from that of the Magyar center, a presumption which 
Tisza ignored like all other Hungarians. He did not 
deny it. He has often told me that he knew no patriot- 
ism save the Hungarian, but that it was in the inter- 
ests of Hungary to keep together with Austria; there- 
fore he saw most things with a crooked vision. Never 
would he have ceded one single square meter of Hun- 
garian territory; but he raised no objection to the 
projected cession of Galicia. He would rather have 
let the whole world be ruined than give up Transyl- 
vania; but he took no interest whatever in the Tyrol. 

Apart from that, he apphed different rules for Austria 
than for Hungary. He would not allow of the slightest 
alteration in Hungary's internal conditions, as they 
must not be effected through external pressure. When 
I, forced thereto by the distress due to lack of provi- 
sions, yielded to Ukrainian wishes and notified the 
Austrian Ministry of the Ukrainian desire to divide 
Galicia in two, Tisza was fully in accordance there- 
with. He went even farther. He opposed any expan- 


sion of the Monarchy, as it might weaken Hungary's 
influence. All his life he was an opponent of the Austro- 
Polish solution, and a mortal enemy of the tripartist 
project; he intended that Poland at most should rank 
as an Austrian province, but would prefer to make her 
over to Germany. He did not even wish Rumania 
to be joined with Hungary, as that would weaken the 
Magyar influence in Hungary. He looked upon it 
as out of the question to grant the Serbians access to 
the sea, because he wanted the Serbian agricultural 
products when he was in need of them; nor would he 
leave an open door for the Serbian pigs, as he did 
not wish the price of the Hungarian to be lowered. 
Tisza went still farther. He was a great stickler for 
equality in making appointments to foreign diplo- 
matic posts, but I could not pay much heed to that. 
If I considered the Austrian X better fitted for the post 
of ambassador than the Hungarian Y, I selected him 
in spite of eventual disagreement. 

This trait in the Hungarian, though legally well- 
founded, was unbearable and not to be maintained in 
war, and led to various disputes between Tisza and 
myself ; and now that he is dead, these scenes leave me 
only a feeling of the deepest regret for many a hasty 
word that escaped me. We afterward made a com- 
promise. Tisza promised never to interfere except 
in cases of the greatest urgency, and I promised to 
take no important step without his sanction. Soon 
after this arrangement he was dismissed by the Em- 
peror for very different reasons. 

I greatly regretted his dismissal, in spite of the dif- 
ficulties he had caused me. To begin with, the Magyar- 
Central standpoint was not a specialty of Tisza's; 
all Magyar politicians upheld it. Secondly, Tisza 
had one great point in his favor; he had no wish to 
prolong the war for the purpose of conquest ; he wished 


for a rectification of the Rumanian frontier and nothing 
beyond that. If it had come to peace negotiations, he 
would have supported me in taking as a basis the 
status quo ante. His support — and that was the third 
reason — was of great value, for he was a man who knew 
how to fight. He had become hard and old on the 
battle-field of parliamentary controversy. He stood 
in awe of nothing and nobody — and he was true as 
gold. Fourthly, this upright man was one of the few 
who openly told the Emperor the truth, and the Em- 
peror made use of this, as we all did. 

I was, therefore, convinced beforehand that a change 
would not improve the situation for me. Esterhazy, 
who succeeded Tisza, certainly never put obstacles 
in the way of my policy. At the same time, I missed 
the strong hand that had kept order in Hungary, and 
the stem voice that warned the Emperor, and I did 
not place the same rehance on Wekerle as on Tisza, 
perhaps because I was not on the same terms of friend- 
ship with him as with Tisza. 

Although I had many disputes with Tisza, it is one 
of the dearest reminiscences of my time of office that, 
up to the death of this remarkable man, our friendship 
remained unchanged. For many years Hungary and 
Stephan Tisza were as one. Tisza was a man whose 
brave and manly character, stem and resolute nature, 
fearlessness and integrity, raised him high above the 
average man. He was a thorough man, with brilliant 
qualities and great faults; a man whose like is rare 
in Europe, in spite of those faults. Great bodies cast 
long shadows; but he was great, and modeled out of 
the stuff from which the heroes of old were made — 
heroes who understood how to fight and die. How 
often did I reproach him with his unhappy ''puszta" 
— patriotism, — that was digging a grave for him and all 
of us. It was impossible to change him; he was 


obstinate and unbending, and his greatest fault was 
that all his life he was under the ban of a petty ecclesi- 
astical poHcy. Not a single square meter would he 
yield either to Rumania in her day, or to the Czechs 
or the Southern Slavs. The career of this wonderful 
man contains a terrible tragedy. He fought and strove 
like none other for his people and his country; for years 
he filled the breach and protected his people and his 
Hungary with his powerful personality, and yet it was 
his obstinate, unyielding policy that was one of the 
chief reasons of Hungary's fall; the Hungary he so 
dearly loved ; the fall that he saw when he died, killed 
by the accursed hand of some cowardly assassin. 

Tisza once told me, with a laugh, that some one had 
said to him that his greatest fault was that he had come 
into the world as a Hungarian. 

I consider this a most pertinent remark. As a 
human being and as a man, he was prominent; but all 
the prejudices and faults of the Magyar way of think- 
ing spoiled him. 

Hungary and her Constitution — dualism — were one 
of our misfortunes in the war. 

Had the Archduke Franz Ferdinand had no other 
plan but that of doing away with dualism, he would 
on that account alone have merited love and admira- 
tion. In Aehrenthal and Berchtold's time Hungarian 
policy settled the Serbian disputes ; it made an alHance 
with Rumania an impossibility; it accompHshed the 
food blockade in Austria during the war; prevented 
all internal reforms; and, finally, at the last moment, 
through Karolyi's petty short-sighted selfishness, the 
front was beaten. This severe judgment on Hungary's 
influence on the war remains true, in spite of the un- 
doubtedly splendid deeds of the Magyar troops. The 
Hungarian is of a strong, courageous, and manly dis- 
position; therefore, almost always an excellent soldier; 


but, unfortunately, in the course of the last fifty years, 
Hungarian policy has done more injury than the Hun- 
garian soldier possibly could make good in the war. 
Once, during the war, a Hungarian met my reproaches 
with the rejoinder that we could be quite sure about 
the Hungarians, they were so firmly linked to Austria. 
*'Yes," said I, ** Hungary is firmly linked to us, but like 
a stone a drowning man has tied round his own neck." 

If we had not lost the war a fight to the death with 
the Magyars would have been inevitable, because it is 
impossible to conceive that any sensible European 
consortium would consent to be brought into partner- 
ship with Magyar aspirations and plans for dominion. 

But, of course, during the war an open fight with 
Budapest was impossible. 

Whether the nations that once composed the Haps- 
burg Empire will ever be reunited is an open question ; 
should it come to pass, may a kind fate preserve us 
from a return of dualism. 


On December 26, 191 6 — four days after entering upon 
office — I received a letter from Tisza in which he im- 
parted to me his views on the tactics to be observed: 

All the European neutrals feel that they are more seriously 
threatened by England than by us. The events in Greece, Rumania, 
etc., as well as England's commercial tyranny, act in our favor, 
and the difference of our attitude to the peace plans as compared 
with that of the Entente — if consistently and cleverly carried out — 
will secure neutral sympathy for our group of Powers. 

From this point of view I see that the chief danger will be that 
our necessarily cautious attitude as regards revealing our war aims 
may give rise to the idea that we are merely trifling with a plan for 
peace for tactical reasons and do nOt really earnestly desire peace. 

We must, theretore, furnish our representatives accredited to 
neutrals (the most important being Spain and Holland) with the 
necessary instructions, so that they may be able to account for our 


cautious attitude and explian the reasons that keep us from making 
a premature or one-sided announcement of our conditions. 

An announcement of the conditions on both sides would expose 
the beUigerent parties in both camps to unfavorahle criticism and 
might easily make the situation more strained ; a one-sided announce- 
ment of the war aims would simply aford the leader of the beUigerent 
enemy group the opportunity of undoing everything. 

It is therefore in the interests of peace that a communication oj 
the peace terms should only be made mutually and confidentially, 
but we might be able to give the individual neutral various hints 
concerning it, to show that our war aims coincide with the lasting 
interests of humanity and the peace of the world, that our chief 
aim, the prevention of Russian world dominion on land and of the 
English at sea, is in the interests of the entire world, and that our 
peace terms would not include anything that would endanger the 
future peace of the world or could be objected to on the neutral side. 

I offer these views for your consideration, and remain in truest 
friendship, your devoted Tisza. 

My predecessor, Burian, shortly before he left, had 
drawn up a peace proposal together with Bethmann. 
The Entente's scornful refusal is still fresh in every 
one's memory. Since hostilities have ceased and there 
have been opportunities of talking to members of the 
Entente, I have often heard the reproach made that 
the offer of peace could not have been accepted by the 
Entente, as it was couched in the terms of a conqueror 
who "grants" peace terms to the enemy. Although 
I will not attempt to deny that the tone of the peace 
proposal was very arrogant — an impression which 
must have been enhanced by Tisza's speeches in the 
Hungarian Parliament— I think, nevertheless, that 
even had it been differently worded it had small pros- 
pect of success. However that may be, the stem 
refusal on the part of the Entente only strengthened 
the situation for the war-keen military party, who, 
with increased vehemence, maintained the point that 
all talk of peace was a mistake, and that the fighting 
must go on to the end. 


In the winter of 191 7 Italy made a slight advance. 
What territorial concessions was the Monarchy pre- 
pared to make ? This did not proceed from the Italian 
government, but was a step taken by a private individ- 
ual which was communicated to me through a friendly 
government. It is extremely difficult to judge of the 
true value of such a step. A government can make 
use of a private individual to take the first step — it will 
probably do so when intercourse is desired; but it 
may also be that a private person, without instructions 
from, or the knowledge of, his government, might do 
the same. Cases similar to the last-mentioned occurred 
frequently during my term of office. 

I always held the standpoint that any such tentative 
steps for peace, even when a ministerial source could 
not be proved a priori, should be treated with prudence, 
but in a friendly spirit. In the above-mentioned case, 
however, the fact was that Italy neither could sepa- 
rate from her allies, not did she wish to do so. Had 
that been her purpose, it would have involved her 
in a conflict with England, whose aim in war was 
the conquest of Germany and not any Italian aspira- 
tions. A separate peace with Italy — ^her separation 
from her allies — ^was entirely out of the question, but 
a general peace would only be possible if the West- 
em Powers could come to an understanding with 

The only object gained by that appeal would have 
been to confirm the extent of our exhaustion from the 
war. Had I answered that I was ready to give up 
this or that province, it would have been interpreted 
as a conclusive symptom of our increasing weakness, 
and would not have brought peace any nearer, but 
rather kept it at a greater distance. 

I answered, therefore, in friendly tone that the 
Monarchy did not aim at conquests, and that I was 


ready to negotiate on the basis of pre-war conditions 
of possession. No answer was sent. 

After the downfall I was told by a person, certainly 
not competent to judge, that my tactics had been mis- 
taken, as Italy would have separated from her allies 
and concluded a separate peace. Further accounts 
given in this chapter prove the injustice of the reproof. 
But it is easy now to confirm the impression that there 
was not a single moment while the war lasted when 
Italy ever thought of leaving her allies. 

An extraordinary incident occurred at the end of 
February, 191 7. A person came to me on February 
26th who was in a position to give credentials show- 
ing him to be a recognized representative of a 
neutral Power, and informed me on behalf of his 
government that he had been instructed to let me know 
that our enemies — or at least one of them — were ready 
to conclude peace with us, and that the conditions 
would be favorable for us. In particular, there was 
to be no question of separating Hungary or Bohemia 
from the empire. I was asked, if agreeable to the 
proposition, to communicate my conditions through 
the same agency, my attention being called, however, 
to the proviso that these proposals riade by the enemy 
government would become null and void from the moment 
that another government friendly to us or to the hostile 
country heard of the step. 

The bearer of this message knew nothing beyond its 
contents. The final sentence made it obvious that 
one of the enemy Powers was anxious to negotiate 
unknown to the others. 

I did not for a moment doubt that it was a question 
of Russia, and my authority confirmed my conviction 
by stating distinctly that he could not say so positively. 
I answered at once by telegram on February 27 th 
through the agency of the intervening neutral Power 


that Austria-Hungary was, of course, ready to put an 
end to further bloodshed, and did not look for any 
gains from the peace, because, as stated several times, 
we were engaged in a war of defense only. But I drew 
attention to the rather obscure sense of the application, 
not being able to understand whether the state apply- 
ing to us wished for peace with us only, or with the 
entire group of Powers, and I was constrained to em- 
phasize the fact that we did not intend to separate 
from our allies. I was ready, however, to offer my 
services as mediator if, as presumed, the state making 
the advance was ready to conclude peace with our 
entire group of Powers. I would guarantee secrecy, 
as I, first of all, considered it superfluous to notify 
our allies. The moment for that would only be when 
the situation was made clear. 

This was followed on March 9th by a reply accepting, 
though not giving a direct answer to the point of 
whether the proposal was for a peace with us alone or 
together with our allies. In order to have it made 
clear as quickly as possible, and not to lose further 
time, I answered at once, requesting the hostile Power 
to send a confidential person to a neutral country, 
whither I also would send a delegate, adding that I 
hoped that the meeting would have a favorable result. 

I never received any answer to this second telegram. 
A week later, on March i6th, the Tsar abdicated. Ob- 
viously, it was a last attempt on his part to save the 
situation, which, had it occurred a few weeks earlier, 
would not only have altered the fate of Russia, but 
that of the whole world. 

The Russian revolution placed us in an entirely new 
situation. After all, there was no doubt that the East 
presented an obvious possibility of concluding peace, 
and all our efforts were turned in that direction, for 
we were anxious to seize the first available moment 


to make peace with the Russian Revolutionary party, 
a peace which the Tsar, faced by his coming downfall, 
had not been able to achieve. 

If the spring of 191 7 was noted for the beginning 
of the unrestricted U-boat warfare and all the hopes 
centered on its success and the altered situation 
anticipated on the part of the Germans, the summer 
of the same year proved that the proceeding did not 
fulfil all expectations, though causing great anxiety 
to England. At that time there were great fears in 
England as to whether, and how, the U-boat could be 
paralyzed. No one in London knew whether the new 
means to counteract it would suffice before they had 
been tried, and it was only in the course of the summer 
that the success of the anti-submarine weapons and 
the convoy principle was confirmed. 

In the early summer of 191 7 very favorable news was 
received relative to English and French conditions. 
Information was sent from Madrid, which was always 
a reHable source, that some Spanish officers returning 
to Madrid from England reported that the situation 
there during the last few weeks had become very much 
worse and that there was no longer any confidence in 
victory. The authorities seized all the provisions 
that arrived for the troops and the munition-workers; 
potatoes and flour were not to be obtained by the 
poorer classes; the majority of sailors fit for service 
had been enrolled in the navy, so that only inefficient 
crews were left in the merchant service, and they 
were difficult to secure, owing to their dread of U-boats, 
and, therefore, many British merchantmen were lying 
idle, as there was no one to man them. 

This was the tenor of the Spanish reports coming 
from different sources. Similar accounts, though in 
slightly different form, came from France. It was 
stated that in Paris great war-weariness was noticeable. 


All hope of definite victory was as good as given up; 
an end must certainly come before the beginning of 
winter, and many of the leading authorities were 
convinced that if war were carried on into the winter 
the result would be as in Russia — a revolution. 

At the same time news came from Constantinople 
that one of the enemy Powers in that quarter had made 
advances for a separate peace. The Turkish govern- 
ment replied that it would not separate from its allies, 
but was prepared to discuss a general peace on a basis 
of non-annexation. Talaat Pasha notified me at once 
of the request and his answer. Thereupon nothing 
more was heard from the enemy Power. At the same 
time news came from Rumania evincing great anxiety 
concerning the increasing break-up in Russia, and 
acknowledging that she considered the game was lost. 
The revolution and the collapse of the army in Russia 
still continued. 

Taken altogether, the outlook presented a more 
hopeful picture for us, and justified the views of those 
who had always held that a little more ''endurance" — 
to use a word since become ominous — would lead to a 

During a war every Minister of Foreign Affairs must 
attach an important and adequately estimated signif- 
icance to confidential reports. The hermetic isolation 
which during the World War divided Europe into two 
separate worlds made this doubly urgent. But it is 
inevitable in regard to confidential reports that they 
must be accepted, for various reasons, with a certain 
amount of skepticism. Those persons who write and 
talk, not from any material, but from political interests, 
from political devotion and sympathy, are, from the 
nature of the case, above suspicion of reporting, for 
their own personal reasons, more optimistically than 
is justified. But they are apt to be deceived. Nations, 


too, are subject to feelings, and the feelings of the masses 
must not be taken as expressing the tendencies of the 
leading influences. France was tired of war, but how 
far the leading statesmen were influenced by that con- 
dition, not to be compared to our own war-weariness, 
was not proved. 

In persons who make this metier their profession, the 
wish is often present, alongside the comprehensible 
mistakes they make, to give pleasure and satisfaction 
by their reports, and not run any risk of losin;2: a 
lucrative post. I think it will be always well to esti- 
mate confidential reports, no matter from what source 
they proceed, as being 50 per cent, less optimistic 
than they appear. The more pessimistic opinion that 
prevailed in Vienna, compared with Berlin, was due, 
first and foremost, to the reliance placed on news 
coming from the enemy countries. Berlin, too, was 
quite certain that we were losing time, although Beth- 
mann once thought fit in the Reichstag to assert the 
contrary; but the German mihtary leaders and the 
politicians looked at the situation among our opponents 
differently from us. 

When the Emperor William was at Laxenburg in the 
summer of 191 7 he related to me some instances of the 
rapidly increasing food trouble in England, and was 
genuinely surprised when I replied that, though I was 
convinced that the U-boats were causing great distress, 
there was no question of a famine. I told the Emperor 
that the great problem was whether the U-boats would 
actually interfere with the transport of American troops, 
as the German military authorities asserted, or not, 
but counseled him not to accept as very serious facts 
a few passing incidents that might have occurred. 

After the beginning of the unrestricted U-boat war- 
fare, J repeat that many grave fears were entertained 
in England. It is a well-known fact. But it was a 


question of fears, not deeds. A person who knew how 
matters stood, and who came to me from a neutral 
country in the summer of 191 7, said: ''If the half 
only of the fears entertained in England be realized, 
then the war will be over in the autumn"; but a wide 
difference existed between London's fears and Berlin's 
hopes, on the one hand, and subsequent events, on the 
other, which had not been taken into account by 
German opinion. 

However that may be, I consider there is no doubt 
that, in spite of the announced intervention of America, 
the summer of 191 7 represented a more hopeful phase 
for us. We were carried along by the tide, and it was 
essential to make the most of the situation. Germany 
must be brought to see that peace must be made, 
in case the peace wave became stronger. 

I resolved, therefore, to propose to the Emperor 
that he should make the first sacrifice and prove to 
Berlin that it was not only by words that he sought 
for peace. I asked him to authorize m.e to state in 
Berlin that, in the event of Germany coming to an 
agreement with France on the Alsace-Lorraine ques- 
tion, Austria would be ready to cede Galicia to Poland, 
which was about to be reorganized, and to make efforts 
to insure that this Great-Polish state should be attached 
to' Germany — not incorporated^ but, say, some form of 
personal union. 

The Emperor and I went to Kreuznach, where T first 
of all made the proposal to Bethmann and Zimmer- 
mann, and subsequently, in the presence of the Em- 
peror Charles and Bethmann, laid it before the Em- 
peror William. It was not accepted unconditionally, 
nor yet refused, and the conference terminated with a 
request from the Germans for consideration of the 

In making this proposal, I was fully aware of all that 


it involved. If Germany accepted the offer, and we in 
our consequent negotiations with the Entente did not 
secure any noteworthy alterations in the Treaty of 
London, we could count on war only. In that case, 
we should have to satisfy not only Italy, Rumania, 
and Serbia, but would also lose the hoped-for com- 
pensation in the annexation of Poland. The Emperor 
Charles saw the situation very clearly, but resolved at 
once, nevertheless, to take the proposed step. 

I, however, thoroughly believed then — though wrong- 
fully — that in the circumstances London and Paris 
would have been able to effect an amendment in the 
Treaty of London. It was not until much later that a 
definite refusal of our offer was sent by Germany. 

In April, before a decision had been arrived at, I 
sent a report to the Emperor Charles explaining the 
situation to him, and requesting that he would submit 
it to the Emperor William. 

The report was as follows: 

Will your Majesty permit me, with the frankness granted me 
from the first day of my appointment, to submit to your Majesty 
my responsible opinion of the situation? 

It is quite obvious that our military strength is coming to an 
end. To enter into lengthy details in this connection would be to 
take up your Majesty's time needlessly. 

I allude only to the decrease in raw materials for the production 
of munitions, to the thoroughly exhausted human material, and, 
above all, to the dull despair that pervades all classes owing to 
under-nourishment and renders impossible any further endurance of 
the sufferings from the war. 

Though I trust we shall succeed in holding out during the next 
few months and carry out a successful defense, I am nevertheless 
quite convinced that another winter campaign would be absolutely 
out of the question; in other words, that in the late summer or in 
the autumn an end must be put to the war at all costs. 

Without a doubt, it will be most important to begin peace negotia- 
tions at a moment when the enemy has not yet grasped the fact of 
our waning strength. If we approach the Entente at a moment 


when disturbances in the interior of the Empire reveal the coming 
breakdown, every step will have been in vain, and the Entente will 
agree to no terms except such as would mean the absolute destruc- 
tion of the Central Powers. To begin at the right time is, therefore, 
of extreme importance. 

I cannot here ignore the subject on which lies the crux of the 
whole argument. That is, the danger of revolution which is rising 
on the horizon of all Europe and which, supported by England, is 
demonstrating a new mode of fighting. Five monarch s have been 
dethroned in this war, and the amazing facility with which the 
strongest Monarchy in the world was overthrown may help to make 
us feel anxious and call to our memory the saying, exempla trahunt. 
Let it not be said that in Germany or Austria -Hungary the conditions 
are different; let it not be contested that the firmly rooted mon- 
archist tendencies in Berlin and Vienna exclude the possibility of 
such an event. This war has opened a new era in the history of 
the world; it is without example and without precedent. The 
world is no longer what it was three years ago, and it will be vain 
to seek in the history of the world a parallel to the happenings 
that have now become daily occurrences. 

The statesman who is neither bhnd nor deaf must be aware how 
the dull despair of the population increases day by day ; he is bound 
to hear the sullen grumbUng of the great masses, and if he be con- 
scious of his own responsibiHty he must pay due regard to that factor. 

Your Majesty has seen the secret reports from the governor of 
the town. Two things are obvious. The Russian revolution affects 
our Slavs more than it does the Germans, and the responsibility for 
the continuation of the war is a far greater one for the monarch 
whose country is united only through the dynasty than for the one 
where the people themselves are fighting for their national inde- 
pendence. Your Majesty knows that the burden laid upon the 
population has assumed proportions that are unbearable; your 
Majesty knows that the bow is strained to such a point that any 
day it may be expected to snap. But should serious disturbances 
occur, either here or in Germany, it will be impossible to conceal 
the fact from the Entente, and from that moment all fiulher efforts 
to secure peace will be defeated. 

I do not think that the internal situation in Germany is widely 

different from what it is here. I am only afraid that the military 

circles in Berlin are deceiving themselves in certain matters. I am 

firmly convinced that Germany, too,-Uke ourselves, has reached the 

limit of her strength, and the responsible political leaders in Berlin 

do not seek to deny it. 


I am firmly persuaded that, if Germany were to attempt to 
embark on another winter campaign, there would be an upheaval 
in the interior of the country which, to my mind, would be far worse 
than a peace concluded by the monarchs. If the monarchs of the 
Central Powers are not able to conclude peace within the next few 
months, it will be done for them by their people, and then will the 
tide of revolution sweep away all that for which our sons and 
brothers fought and died. 

I do not wish to make any oratio pro domo, but I beg your Majesty 
graciously to remember that I, the only one to predict the Rumanian 
war two years before, spoke to deaf ears, and that when I, two 
months before the war broke out, prophesied almost the very 
day when it would begin, nobody would believe me. I am just as 
convinced of my present diagnosis as I was of the former one, and 
I cannot too insistently urge you not to estimate too lightly the 
dangers that I see ahead. 

Without a doubt, the American declaration of war has greatly 
aggravated the situation. It may be many months before America 
can throw any noteworthy forces into the field, but the moral fact, 
the fact that the Entente has the hope of fresh forces, brings the 
situation to an unfavorable stage for us, because our enemies have 
more time before them than we have and can afford to wait longer 
than we, unfortimately, are able to do. It cannot yet be said what 
course events will take in Russia. I hope — and this is the vital 
point of my whole argument — that Russia has lost her motive 
power for a long time to come, perhaps forever, and that this im- 
portant factor will be made use of. I expect, nevertheless, that a 
Franco-EngUsh, probably also an Italian, offensive will be launched 
at the first opportunity, though I hope and trust that we shall be 
able to repulse both attacks. If this succeeds — and I reckon it 
can be done in two or three months — we must then, before America 
takes any further military action to our disadvantage, make a more 
comprehensive and detailed peace proposal and not shrink from 
the probabjy great and heavy sacrifices we may have to make. 

Germany places great hopes on the U-boat warfare. I consider 
such hopes are deceptive. I do not for a moment disparage the 
fabulous deeds of the German sea heroes; I admit admiringly that 
the tonnage sunk per month is phenomenal, but I assert that the 
success anticipated and predicted by the Germans has not been 

Your Majesty will remember that Admiral von HoltzendorfT, 
when last in Vienna, told us positively that the unrestricted U-boat 
warfare would bring England to her knees within six months. 


Your Majesty will also remember how we combated the prediction 
and declared that, though we did not doubt the U-boat campaign 
would seriously affect England, yet the looked-for success would be 
discounted by the anticipated entry of America into the war. It is 
now two and a half m.onths (almost half the time stated) since the 
U-boat warfare started, and all the information that we get from 
England is to the effect that the downfall of this, our most powerful 
and most dangerous adversary, is not to be thought of. If, in spite 
of many scruples, your Majesty yielded to Germany's wish and 
consented to allow the Austro-Hungarian navy to take part in the 
U-boat warfare, it was not because we were converted by the Ger- 
man arguments, but because your Majesty deemed it to be abso- 
lutely necessary to act with Germany in loyal concert in all quarters 
and because we were firmly persuaded that Germany, unfortunately, 
would never desist from her resolve to begin the unrestricted U-boat 

To-day, however, in Germany the most enthusiastic advocates 
of the U-boat warfare are beginning to see that this means to victory 
will not be decisive, and I trust that the mistaken idea that England 
within a few months will be forced to sue for peace will lose ground 
in Berlin too. Nothing is more dangerous in politics than to believe 
the things one wishes to believe; nothing is more fatal than the 
principle not to wish to see the truth and to fall a prey to Utopian 
illusions from which sooner or later a terrible awakening will follow. 

England, the motive power in the war, will not be compelled to 
lay down her arms in a few m.onths' time, but perhaps — and here 
I concede a Hmited success to the U-boat scheme— perhaps England 
in a few months will ask herself whether it is wise and sensible to 
continue this war d, Voutrance, or whether it would not be more 
statesman-like to set foot upon the golden bridges the Central 
Powers must build for her, and then the moment will have come 
for great and painful sacrifices on the part of the Central Powers. ^ 

Your Majesty has rejected the repeated attempts of our enemies 
to separate us from our allies, in which step I took the responsibility 
because your Majesty is incapable of any dishonorable action. But 
at the same time, your Majesty instructed me to notify the states- 
men of the German Empire that our strength is at an end and that 
after the close of the summer Germany must not reckon on us any 
longer. I carried out these commands and the German statesmen 
left me in no doubt that for Germany, ^:oo, another winter campaign 
would be impossible. In this one sentence may be summed up 
all that I have to say : 

We can still wait some weeks and try if there is any possibility 


of dealing with Paris or Petersburg. If that does not succeed, then 
we must — and at the right time — play our last card and make the 
extreme proposals I have already hinted at. Your Majesty has 
proved that you have no selfish plans and that you do not expect 
from your German ally sacrifices that your Majesty would not be 
ready to make yourself. More than that cannot be expected. 

Your Majesty, nevertheless, owes it to God and to your peoples 
to make very effort to avert the catastrophe of a collapse of the 
Monarchy; it is your sacred duty to God and to your peoples to 
defend those peoples, the dynastic principle, and your throne with 
all the means in your power and to your very last breath. 

On May nth there came the following ofificial answer 
from the Imperial Chancellor, which was sent by the 
German Emperor to the Emperor Charles, and then 
to me: 

In accordance with your Majesty's commands I beg most humbly 
to submit the following in answer to the inclosed expose from the 
Imperial and Royal Minister of Foreign Affairs of 1 2th ult. 

Since the expose was drawn up, the French and English on the 
western front have carried out the predicted great offensive on a 
wide front, ruthlessly sacrificing masses of men and an enormous 
quantity of war material. The German army checked the advance 
of the numerically superior enemy; further attacks, as we have 
every reason to believe, will also be shattered by the heroism of the 
men and the iron will of their leaders. 

Judging from all our experiences hitherto in the war, we may 
consider the situation of the alHed armies on the Isonzo with the 
same confidence. 

The eastern front has been greatly reduced, owing to the political 
unheaval in Russia. There can be no question of an offensive on a 
large scale on the part of Russia. A further easing of the situation 
would release more men even if it were considered necessary to have 
a strong barrier on the Russian frontier to guard against local dis- 
turbances owing to the revolutionary movement. With the addi- 
tional forces, the conditions in the west would become more favor- 
able for us. The withdrawal of men would also provide more troops 
for the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy for the successful carrying 
out of the fighting on the ItaUan front until the end of the war is 

In both allied monarchies there is an ample supply of raw ma- 



terial for the manufacture of munitions. Our situation as regards 
provisions is such that with the greatest economy we can hold out 
until the new harvest. The same apphes to Austria-Hungary, 
especially if her share of suppHes from Rumania is taken into 

The deeds of our navy rank beside the successes of the army. 
When Admiral von Holtzendorff was permitted to lay before his 
Apostolic Majesty the plans for the U-boat warfare, the prospects 
of success for this stringent measure had been thoroughly tested 
here and the expected military advantages weighed against the 
political risk. We did not conceal from ourselves that the infliction 
of a blockade of the coasts of England and France would bring 
about the entry into war of the United States and, consequently, a 
falling off of other neutral states. We were fully aware that our 
enemies would thus gain a moral and economic renewal of strength, 
but we were, and still are, convinced that the disadvantages of the 
U-boat warfare are far surpassed by its advantages. The largest 
share in the world struggle which began in the east has now been 
transferred to the west in ever increasing dimensions, where EngHsh 
tenacity and endurance promote and strengthen the resistance of 
our enemies by varied means. A definite and favorable result for 
us could be achieved only by a determined attack on the vital spot 
in the hostile forces; that is, England. 

The success obtained and the effect already produced by the 
U-boat warfare exceed all calculations and expectations. The latest 
statements of leading men in England concerning the increasing 
difficulty in obtaining provisions and the stoppage of supplies, as 
well as corresponding comments in the press, not only include urgent 
appeals to the people to put forth their utmost strength, but bear 
aho the stamp of grave anxiety and testify to the distress that 
England is suffering. 

The Secretary of State, Helfferich, at a meeting of the Head 
Committee of the Reichstag on the 28th ult., gave a detailed account 
of the effects of the U-boat warfare on England. The review was 
pubHshed in the Norddeutsche Allgemeine Zeitung of the ist inst. 
I beg herewith to refer to the inclosed.^ 

According to the latest news the Food Controller, Lord Rhondda, 
owing to the inadequate supply of com, has been compelled to 
specify a new allotment of cargo space. This is already so restricted 
that more room for corn can be secured only by hindering the con- 
duct of the war in other ways. Apart from abandoning overseas 


* Helfferich's expose is reproduced in the Appendix. 


traffic, vessels could be released only by cutting down such imports as 
absorbed much space. England requires not only great transport 
faciHties for provisions, but also for the import of ore to keep up 
war industries, and also pit props to enable the coal output to be 
kept at a high level. In the case of the ore needed for England 
and the wood available in the country, it is not possible to restrict 
the cargo space in these two instances. Already, after three months 
of the U-boat warfare, it is a fact that the shortage of cargo space 
caused by the U-boats reduces the living conditions of the popula- 
tion to an unbearable extent, and paralyzes all war industries, so 
much so that the hope of defeating Germany by superior stores of 
munitions and a greater number of guns has had to be given up. 
The lack of transport facilities will also prevent the larger output of 
war industries in America making up for the lesser output in Eng- 
land. The speed with which the U-boat warfare has destroyed 
vessels excludes the possibility of building new vessels to furnish ade- 
quate cargo space. More vessels have been destroyed in a month 
of U-boat warfare than the EngHsh dockyards have turned out in 
the last year. Even the thousand much-talked-of American wooden 
vessels, if they were there, would cover the losses of only four 
months. But they will not come before it is too late. English 
experts on the subject have already said quite openly that there 
are only two ways of counteracting the effect of the U-boats: 
either to build vessels quicker than the Germans destroy them, or 
else to destroy the U-boats quicker than the Germans can build 
them. The first has proved to be impossible, and the U-boat losses 
are far less than the new vessels building. 

England will also have to reckon on a progressive rise in the loss 
of tonnage. 

The effects of the U-boat warfare on the peoples' provisions and 
on all private and government activities will be felt more and more. 

I anticipate, therefore, the final results of the U-boat warfare with 
the greatest confidence. 

According to secret and reliable information, the Prime Minister 
Ribot recently stated to the Italian Ambassador in Paris that France 
was faced with exhaustion. This opinion was expressed before the 
beginning of the last Franco-English offensive. Since then, France 
has sacrificed life to a terrible extent by keeping up the intensity of 
the fighting until the offensive ceased. 

The French nation is certainly doing marvelous things in this 
war, but the government cannot sustain the enormous burden after 
it reaches a certain limit. A reaction in the temper of France, which 
is kept up by artificial means, is inevitable. 


As regards our o\\nn internal situation, I do not underestimate 
the difficulties presented by the inevitable results of the severe fight- 
ing and the exclusion from the seas. But I firmly beUeve that we 
shall succeed in overcoming these difficulties without permanently 
endangering the nation's strength and general welfare, without any 
further crises and without menace to government organization. 

Although we are justified in viewing the total situation in a 
favorable light, I am nevertheless in complete agreement with 
Count Czernin in pursuing the aim of bringing about as speedily 
as possible an honorable and, in the interests of the Empire and 
of our allies, just peace. I also share his opinion that the important 
factor of the weakening of Russia must be exploited, and that a 
fresh tentative offer for peace must be put forward at a time when 
both political and military initiative are still in our hands. Count 
Czernin estimates a suitable time will be in two or three months, 
when the enemy offensive will be at an end. As a matter of fact, 
in view of the French and English expectations of the decisive suc- 
cess for their offensive, and the Entente not having lost all hopes of 
Russia resuming her activities, any too pronounced preparations 
for peace would not only be doomed to failure, but would put new 
life into the enemy by revealing the hopeless exhaustion of the 
Central Powers' forces. At the present moment a general peace 
could be bought only by our submission to the will of the enemy. 
A peace of that nature would not be tolerated by the people and 
would lead to fatal dangers for the IMonarchy. It appears to me 
that quiet, determination, and caution as regards the outer world 
are more than ever an imperative necessity. The development of 
affairs in Russia has hitherto been favorable for us. Party disputes 
are kept more and more within the narrow Hmits of peace and war 
questions by political, economic, and social exigencies, and the 
impression grows every day that the party which makes for peace 
with the Central Powers will be the one to remain in power. It is 
our solemn duty carefully to follow and encourage the process of 
development and disruption in Russia, and to sound the country, 
not with too obvious haste, but yet with sufficient expert skill to 
lead to practical peace negotiations. The probabiHty is that Russia 
will avoid any appearance of treachery toward her allies, and will 
endeavor to find a method which will practically lead to a state of 
peace between herself and the Central Powers, but outwardly will 
have the appearance of the union of both parties as a prelude to the 
general peace. 

As in July, 19 14, we entered regardlessly into a loyal alliance 
with Austria-Hungary, in like manner when the World War is at an 


end will a basis be found for terms which will guarantee a prosperous 
peace to the two closely united monarchies. 

This optimistic reply of Bethmann's was obviously 
not only based on the idea of infusing more confidence 
in the future in us, but was also the true expression 
of a more favorable atmosphere prevailing, as Berlin 
naturally received the same reports from the enemy 
countries as we did. 

I received about that time a letter from Tisza which 
contained the following passage: 

The varied information received from the enemy countries leaves 
no doubt that the war is drawing to a close. It is now above all 
essential to keep a steady nerve and play the game to the end with 
sang-froid. Let there be no signs of weakness. It is not from a love 
of humanity in general that our enemies have become more peace- 
fully inclined, but because they realize that we cannot be crushed. 

I beg of you no longer to give vent to the sentiments in your 
report of April 12th. A pessimistic tendency evinced now by the 
leader of our foreign affairs would ruin everything. I know that 
you are prudent, but I beg you to use your influence so that both 
his Majesty and his entourage may show a confident front to the 
world. And again, no one will have anything to say to us if they 
cease to believe in our powers of resistance — and are not persuaded 
that our alliance rests on a soHd foimdation. 

It was evident that the only right tactics were to 
make the supremest efforts at the front and throughout 
the country, on the one hand, in order to hold the 
situation a little longer, and, on the other, to persuade 
the enemy that, in spite of the favorable situation, 
we were prepared for peace without conquest. To 
appoint Hebel to the German Military Commission to 
carry out this last procedure seemed devoid of sense. 
Neither did I expect to gain much from recent inter- 
vention in the Wilhelmstrasse, and endeavored, there- 
fore, to put myself in direct touch with the German 


One of my political friends who had numerous and 
excellent connections with the German Reichstag put 
himself into communication with different leaders in 
Berlin and explained to them the situation in the 
Monarchy. It was understood that this gentleman 
was not acting for the Ministry, but presenting his own 
impressions and views. He was enjoined to be very 
cautious, as any indiscretion might have incalculable 
consequences. If the Entente were to imagine that 
we were thinking of ending the war, not for love of 
peace, but because we simply could not hold out any 
longer, all efforts would have been vain. In that 
respect, Tisza was perfectly right. It was, therefore, 
absolutely necessar>- that the person to whom this 
deHcate mission had been intrusted should act in such 
a manner as would keep it a secret from the Entente, 
a manner devoid of weakness and uniting confidence 
with reasonable war aims, but also in a manner which 
would enable the Ministry eventually to disavow the 

My friend undertook the task with just as great 
zeal as efficiency, and, in brief, this is what he told the 
Berlin leaders, Erzberger^ and Siidekum in particular. 
As far as he could judge, we had now reached a turning- 
point. The next few weeks would decide whether it 
was to be peace or war a Voutrance. France was tired 
and not anxious for America's entry into the war if 
it was not to be. If Germany forced the Entente to 
continue the war the situation would be very grave. 
Neither Austria-Hungary nor Turkey could do more. 
Germany by herself could not bring the war to a 
successful end. Austria-Hungary's position was obvi- 
ous to the whole world. She was ready to make peace 

» At this time T did not know that my secret report to the Emperor 
was handed over to Herr Erzberger and not kept secret by him. (Later 
it was made public through the revelations of Count Wedel.) 


without annexations and without war compensation, 
and to devote all her energies to preventing the recur- 
rence of a war. (Austria-Hungary's standpoint was 
that a universal, equal, but extensive disarmament on 
sea and on land offered the only means to restore the 
financial situation in Europe after the war.) 

Germany must publicly notify her position just as 
clearly as Austria-Hungary had done and must declare 
the following : 

(i) No annexations, no indemnities. 

(2) Particularly the unconditional and total release 

of Belgium (politically and economically). 

(3) All territories occupied by Germany and Austria- 

Hungary to be evacuated as soon as both those 
states had had their territories restored to 
them (including the German colonies). 

(4) Germany, as well as Austria-Hungary, to work 

for a general disarmament and guaranty that 
no further war be possible. 

Such declaration to be a joint one from the Ger- 
man government and the Reichstag, and to be made 

The peace resolution of July 19, 191 7, was the result 
of this step. The Imperial Chancellor Bethmann was 
the first victim. The Supreme Military Command, 
by whom he always had been persecuted, now trying 
to secure his dismissal, declared such resolution to be 
unacceptable. When Bethmann had gone and Mi- 
chaelis had been appointed, they were satisfied. 

Although the resolution in itself was satisfactory, 
it had one fault at the start. It was no secret that 
every one connected with Pan-Germanism, especially 
the German generals, disagreed with the decision, 
and would not accept the resolution as an admission 
from the entire country. Certainly the great majority 
in Germany, counting them per head, supported the 


resolution, but the leading men, together with a con- ' 
siderable following, were opposed to it. The **Starva- I 
tion Peace," the ''Peace of Renunciation," and the ; 
*'Scheidemann Peace" were the subjects of articles in 
the papers expressing the greatest disapproval of the 1 
resolution. Neither did the German government take . 
up any decided attitude. On July 19th the Imperial i 
Chancellor Michaelis made a speech approving the j 
resolution, but adding, ''as I understand it." i 
The Imperial Chancellor wrote a letter to me in | 
August confirming his very optimistic views of the 
situation, and defining Germany's views regarding 
Belgium. The phrase, "as I understand it," above ! 
alluded to in his approval of the resolution, was ex- 
plained in his letter, at any rate, as to the Belgium j 
question: "As Germany wishes to reserve to herself ^ 
the right to exercise a far-reaching military and eco- I 
nomic influence on Belgium." He wrote as follows : 


Berlin, August ly, 1917. I 

Dear Count Czernxn,— According to our agreement, I take the I 

liberty briefly to lay before you my views of our discussions of the 
14th and 15th inst., and would be extremely grateful if your Excel- ] 

lency would be so kind as to advise me of your views on my activities. 
The internal economic and political situation in Germany justifies 
me in the firm belief that Germany herself would be able to stand 
a fourth year of war. The bread-corn harvest promises better than i 

we thought five or six weeks ago, and will be better than that of the | 

previous year. The potato harvest promises a considerably higher ' 

yield than in 19 16-17. Fodder is estimated to be much less than I 

last year; by observing a unified and well-thought-out economic 
plan for Germany herself and the occupied territories, including 
Rimiania, we shall be in a position to hold out in regard to fodder, 
as was also possible in the very dry year 191 5. 

There is no doubt that the political situation is grave. The i 

people are suffering from the war, and the longing for peace is very ; 

great; however, there is no trace of any general and really morbid 
exhaustion, and when food is controlled any work done will be no 
worse than it was last year. i 


This economic and political prospect can only be altered if the 
condition of the allies, or of the neutrals, under pressure from the 
Entente, should become very much worse. It would be a change 
for the worse for us if our allies or the neutral states, contrary to 
our expectations and hopes, were to experience such shortage as 
would cause them to turn to us. To a certain extent, this is already 
the case; a further increase of their claims would greatly prejudice 
our economic position and in certain cases endanger it. It must 
be admitted that the situation in the fourth year of war in general 
is more difficult than in the third year. The most earnest endeavors, 
therefore, will be made to bring about a peace as soon as possible. 

Nevertheless, our genuine desire for peace must not lead us to 
come forward with a fresh peace proposal. That, in my opinion, 
would be a great tactical error. Our demarche for peace last Decem- 
ber found sympathy in the neutral states, but it was answered by 
our adversaries raising their demands. A fresh step of the kind 
would be put down to our weakness and would prolong the war; 
any peace advances must come now from the enemy. 

The leading motive in my foreign policy will always be the 
watchful care of our alliance with Austria-Hungary that the storm 
of war has made still stronger, .and a trusting, friendly and loyal 
co-operation with the leading men of the allied Monarchy. If the 
spirit of the alliance — and in this I know your Excellency agrees — 
remains on the same high level as heretofore, even our enemies 
would see that it was impossible for one of the allies to agree to 
any separate negotiations offered to him, unless he states beforehand 
that the discussion would be entered into only if the object were a 
general peace. If this were clearly laid down there could be no 
reason why one of the allies should not listen to such proposal from 
the enemy and with him discuss preparations for peace. 

At present no decided line of action can be specified for such a 
proceeding. Your Excellency was good enough to ask me whether 
the reinstatement of the status quo would be a suitable basis on 
which to start negotiations. My standpoint in this matter is as 
follows : I have already stated in the Reichstag that Germany is not 
striving for any great changes in power after the war, and is ready 
to negotiate provided the enemy does not demand the cession of any 
German territory; with such a conception of the term ''reinstate- 
ment of the status quo,'' that form would be a very suitable basis for 
negotiations. This would not exclude the desired possibility of 
retaining the present frontiers, and by negotiating bring former 
enemy economic territory into close economic and military conjunc- 
tion with Germany — this would refer to Courland, Lithuania, and 


Poland — and thus secure Germany's frontiers and give a guaranty 
for her vital needs on the continent and overseas. 

Germany is ready to evacuate the occupied French territory, but 
must reserv^e to herself the right, hy means of the peace negotiations ^ 
to the economic exploitation of the territory of Longwy and Briey, 
if not through direct incorporation, by a legal grant to exploit. We 
are not in a position to cede to France any noteworthy districts in 
Alsace-Lorraine . 

I should wish to have a free hand in the negotiations in the matter 
of connecting Belgium with Germany in a military and economic 
sense. The terms that I read out, taken from notes at the Kreuznach 
negotiations — the mihtary control of Belgium until the conclusion 
of a defensive and offensive alliance with Germany, the acquisition 
of Liege (or a long-term rental thereof) — were the maximum claims 
of the Supreme Military and Naval Command. The Supreme Mili- 
tary Command agrees with me that these terms or similar ones can 
be secured only if peace can be enforced on England. But we are 
of opinion that a vast amount of economic and military influence 
must be brought to bear in Belgiiun in the matter of the negotiations 
and would perhaps not meet with much resistance, because Belgium, 
from economic distress, will come to see that her being joined to 
Germany is the best guaranty for a prosperous future. 

As regards Poland, I note that the confidential hint from your 
Excellency to give up Galicia and enroll it in the new Polish state 
is subject to the ceding of portions of Alsace-Lorraine to France, 
which was to be as a counter-sacrifice, but must be considered as out 
of the question. The development of Poland as an independent 
state must be carried out in the sense of the proclamation of No- 
vember 5, 1 9 16. Whether this development will prove to be an 
actual advantage for Germany or will become a great danger for 
the future will be tested later. There are already many signs of 
danger, and what is particularly to be feared is that the Austro- 
Hungarian government cannot notify us now during the war of her 
complete indifference to Poland and leave us a free hand in the 
administration of the whole state. 

It will also remain to be seen whether, in view of the danger 
caused to Germany and also to her relations with Austria-Hungary 
through Poland's unwillingness to accept the situation, it would 
not be more desirable politically for Germany, while retaining the 
frontier territory as being necessary for miUtary protection, to grant 
to Poland full right of self-determination, also with the possibiHty 
of being joined to Russia. 

The question of the annexation of Rumania, according to the 


Kreuznach debate of May ist, must be treated further and solved 
in connection with the questions that are of interest to Germany 
respecting Courland, Lithuania, and Poland. 

It was a special pleasure to me to meet you, dear Count Czemin, 
here in Berlin and to discuss openly and frankly with you the 
questions that occupy us at present. I hope in days to come there 
may be an opportunity for a further exchange of thoughts enabling 
us to solve problems that may arise, and carry them out in full 

With the expression of my highest esteem, I remain your very 
devoted Michaelis. 

I replied to the Chancellor that I welcomed, as a 
matter of course, the agreement to maintain complete 
frankness, but remarked that I could not share his 
optimism. I explained that the increasing war- weari- 
ness, both in Germany and in Austria-Hungary, ren- 
dered it imperative to secure peace in good time, that 
is, before any revolutionary signs appeared, for any 
beginning of disturbances would spoil the chance of 
peace. The German point of view in the case of Bel- 
gium seemed to me quite mistaken, as neither the 
Entente nor Belgium would ever consent to the terms. 
I could not, therefore, conceal from him that his point 
of view was a serious obstacle to peace ; that it was also 
in direct opposition to the Reichstag view, and I failed 
to understand it. 

I then spoke of the necessity of coming to an under- 
standing as to the minimum of the war aims in which 
an important part is played by the question whether 
and how we can achieve a voluntary and peaceable an- 
nexation of Poland and Rumania by the Central Powers. 

I finally again pointed out that I interpreted the 
views of the German Reichstag as demanding a peace 
without annexation or indemnity, and that it would 
be out of the question for the German government to 
ignore the unanimous decision of the Reichstag. It 
was not a question of whether we wished to go on 


fighting, but whether we could, and it was my duty 
to impress upon him in time that we were bound to 
end the war. 

Doctor MichaeHs was more given to Pan-Germanism 
than his predecessor. 

. It was astonishing to what degree the Pan-Germans 
misunderstood the situation. They dishked me so 
intensely that they avoided me, and I had very few 
deaHngs with them. They were not to be converted. 
I remember one instance when a representative of that 
party called on me in Vienna to explain to me the con- 
ditions under which his group was prepared to conclude 
peace : the annexation of Belgium, of a part of east 
France (Longueville and Briey), of Courland and 
Lithuania, the cession of the English fleet to Germany, 
and I forget how many milliards in war indemnity, etc. 
I received the gentleman in the presence of the Ambas- 
sador von Wiesner, and we both agreed that it was 
purely a case for a doctor. 

There was a wide breach between the Imperial Chan- 
cellor Michaelis's ideas and our own. It was impos- 
ible to bridge it over. Soon after he left office to 
make way for the statesman-like Count Hertling. 

About this time very far-reaching events were being 
enacted behind the scenes which had a very pronounced 
influence on the course of affairs. 

Acts of great indiscretion and interference occurred 
on the part of persons who, without being in any im- 
portant position, had access to diplomatic affairs. 
There is no object here in mentioning names, especially 
as the responsible political leaders themselves heard 
only the details of what happened much later, and then 
in a very unsatisfactory way — at a time when the 
pacifist tendencies of the Entente were slackening.^ 

* The disclosures made by Count Wedel and Helfferich concerning 
Erzberger are only a link in the chain. 


It was impossible then to see clearly in such a 
labyrinth of confused and contradictory facts. The 
truth is that in the spring or early summer of 191 7 
leading statesmen in the countries of the allies and of 
the Entente gathered the impression that the existence 
of the Quadruple AlHance was at an end. At the very 
moment when it was of the utmost importance to main- 
tain secrecy concerning the conditions of our alliance 
the impression prevailed, and, naturally, the Entente 
welcomed the first signs of disruption in the Quadruple 

I do not know if the opportunity will ever occur of 
throwing a clear light on all the proceedings of those 
days. To explain the further development it will 
suffice to confirm what follows here. This is what 
happened. In the spring of 191 7 connecting links were 
estabhshed between Paris and London. The first 
impressions received were that the Western Powers 
were ready to make use of us as a bridge to Germany 
and to a general peace. At a somewhat later stage 
the wind veered and the Entente endeavored to make 
a separate peace with us. 

Several important details only came to my knowledge 
later, some at the time of my resignation in the spring 
of 1918, and some not until the collapse in the winter 
of 1919. There was no lack of voices to blame me for a 
supposed double policy, which the public also sus- 
pected, and to accuse me of having made different 
statements to Berlin from those I made in Paris. 
These charges were brought by personal enemies who 
deliberately slandered me, which tales were repeated 
by others who knew nothing about the affair. The 
fact is that when I heard of the episode I immediately 
possessed myself of documents proving that not only did I 
know nothing whatever about the affair, but could not 
possibly have known. 


Astronomical causes sometimes give rise to dis- 
turbances in the universe, the reason for which cannot 
be understood by the observer. I felt in the same way, 
without being able to prove anything definite, from 
certain signs that I noticed, that in those worlds on the 
other side of the trenches events were happening that 
were inexplicable to me. I felt the effect, but could 
not discover the cause. In the spirit of the Entente, 
now more favorably disposed for peace, an undertone 
was distinctly audible. There was anxiety and a 
greater inclination for peace than formerly, but again 
probably only in view of the alleged laxity of our 
alliance conditions and the hopes of the downfall of the 
Quadruple Alliance. A friend of mine, a subject to a 
neutral state, wrote to me from Paris in the summer 
and told me he had heard from a reliable source that 
apparently at the Quai d'Orsay they expected the 
Monarchy to separate from Germany, which, as a 
matter of course, would alter the entire military 

Soon afterward very secret information was received 
from a neutral country that a Bulgarian group was 
negotiating with the Entente behind the back and with- 
out the knowledge of Radoslawoff. As soon as sus- 
picion of a breach in the Alliance had been aroused in 
our allies, the Bulgarian party hastened to forestall 
the event. We felt as safe about Radoslawoff as 
about Talaat Pasha; but in both countries other 
forces were at work. 

The suspicions aroused in our friends concerning 
our plans were a further disadvantage, certainly only 
of a technical nature, but yet not to be underestimated. 
Our various agents worked splendidly, but it lay in the 
nature of the case that their dealings were more pro- 
tracted than those carried out by the Foreign Minister 
himself. According to the course taken by the con- 



versation, they were obliged to seek fresh instructions; 
they were more tied, and therefore forced to assume a 
more halting attitude, than a responsible leader would 
have to do. In the summer of 191 7, therefore, I sug- 
gested going to Switzerland myself, where negotiations 
were proceeding. But my journey could not have been 
kept secret, and if an effort had been made to do so it 
would have been all the more certain to arouse suspicion, 
owing to the mistrust already awakened. But not in 
Berlin. I believe I still held the confidence of the lead- 
ing men in Berlin sufficiently to avert that. I should 
have explained the situation to the Imperial Chancellor, 
and that would have sufficed. In Turkey and Bulgaria 
the case was different. 

One party in Bulgaria favored the Entente. If 
Bulgaria was under the impression that our group was 
falling asunder she would have staked everything to 
try to save herself by a separate peace. In Constan- 
tinople, too, there was an Entente group. Talaat and 
Enver were as reliable as they were strong. But a 
journey undertaken by me to Switzerland in the con- 
ditions described might prove to be the alarm signal 
for a general sauve qui pent. But the very idea that 
the two Balkan countries would act as they supposed 
we should do would have sufficed to destroy any 
attempt at peace in Paris and London. 

The willingness to prepare for peace on the part of 
the enemy declined visibly during the summer. It was 
evident from many trifling signs, separately of small 
import, collectively of much. In the summer of 191 7, 
too, the first horror of the U-boat warfare began to 
grow less. It was seen by the enemy that it could not 
accomplish what he had first feared, and that again 
put life into the desire for a final military victory. 

These two facts together probably contributed to 
fan back the peace wind blowing from the west. 


Among other things, the Armand-Revertera negotia- 
tions were proceeding the whole time. It is not yet 
the moment to speak of the negotiations which in the 
spring of 1918, together with the letters of the Emperor 
to Prince Sixtus, created such a sensation. But this 
much must be stated: that Revertera in the negotia- 
tions proved himself to be an equally correct as efficient 
agent who acted exactly according to the instructions 
he received from the Ballplatz. Our various attempts 
to take up the threads of peace when emanating from 
the Ballplatz were always intended for our entire group 
of Powers. 

Naturally, it was not in the interests of the Entente 
to prevent us from separating from Germany, and when 
the impression was produced in London and Paris 
unofficially that we were giving Germany up, we our- 
selves thus used sabotage in the striving for a gen- 
eral peace; for it would, of course, have been pleas- 
ing to the Entente to see Germany, her chief enemy, 

There was a twofold and terrible mistake in thus 
trifling with the idea of a separate peace. First of all, 
it could not release us from the terms of the Treaty of 
London, and yet it spoiled the atmosphere for negoti- 
ating a general peace. At the time when these events 
were being enacted, I presumed, but only knew for 
certain later, that Italy, in any case, would claim the 
promises made to her. 

In the spring of 191 7 Ribot and Lloyd George con- 
ferred with Orlando on the subject, when at St. -Jean 
de Maurienne, and endeavored to modify the terms 
in case of our separating from Germany. Orlando 
refused, and insisted on his view, that, even in the event 
of a separate peace, we should still have to yield up 
Trieste and the Tyrol as far as the Brenner Pass to 
Italy, and thus have to pay an impossible price. And 


secondly, these separatist tactics would break up our 
forces, and had already begun to do so. 

When a person starts running away in a fight he but 
too easily drags the other with him. I do not doubt 
that the Bulgarian negotiations, in order to take sound- 
ings, were connected with the above events. 

The effect of this well-meant but secret and dilet- 
tante policy was that we suggested to the Entente a 
willingness to separate from our allies, and lost our 
position in the struggle for a separate peace. For we 
saw that in separating from Germany we could not 
escape being crippled ; that, therefore, a separate peace 
was impossible, and that we had dealt a death-blow at 
the still intact Quadruple Alliance. 

Later I had information from London relating to 
the official view of the situation there, which differed 
very much from the optimistic confidential reports 
and proved that the desire for peace was not so strong. 
It will easily be understood that for us the English 
policy was always the most interesting. England's 
entry into the war had made the situation so dangerous 
that an understanding arrived at with her — that is, an 
understanding between England and Germany through 
our intervention — would have put an end to the war. 

This information was to the effect that England was 
less than ever in a position to confer with Germany 
until the two cardinal points had been guaranteed — 
the cession of Alsace-Lorraine and the abolition of 
German militarism. The former was a French claim, 
and England must and would support France in this 
to her very utmost; the second claim was necessary 
in the interests of the future peace of the world. Ger- 
many's military strength was always estimated very 
highly in England, but the army's deeds in this war 
had surpassed all expectations. The military successes 
had encouraged the growth of the military spirit. 


The peace resolution passed in the Reichstag proved 
nothing, or, at any rate, not enough, for the Reichstag 
is not the real exponent of the Empire in the outside 
world; it became paralyzed through an unofficial col- 
lateral government, the generals, who possessed the 
greater power. Certain statements made by General 
Ludendorff — so the Entente said — proved that Ger- 
many did not wish for an honorable peace of under- 
standing. Besides this the Wilhelmstrasse did not 
associate itself with the majority in the Reichstag. 
The war was not being waged against the German 
nation, but against its militarism, and to conclude 
peace with the latter would be impossible. It appeared, 
further, that under no circumstances would England 
restore Germany's colonies. So far as the Monarchy 
was concerned, England appeared to be ready to con- 
clude a separate peace with her, though subject to the 
promises made to her own allies. According to the 
latter there was much territory to be given up to Italy, 
Serbia, and Rumania. But in exchange we might 
reckon on a sort of annexation of newly made states 
like Poland. 

Although this information left no doubt that England 
was not then thinking of making advances to Germany, 
still the fear of Prussian militarism was at the bottom 
of her reasons for refusing. My impression was that, 
through a more favorable continuous development, a 
settlement and understanding might be feasible on the 
territorial but not on the military questions. But, 
on the contrary, the stronger Germany's military power 
proved itself to be, the more did the Entente fear 
that its power of defense was invincible unless it was 
broken then. 

Not only the period preceding war and the outbreak 
of war, but the actual course of the war has been full 
of many and disturbing misunderstandings. For long, 


it was not understood here what England meant by 
the term mihtarism. It was pointed out that the Eng- 
Hsh navy was jealously defending the dominion of the 
seas, that France and Russia stood ready armed for 
the attack, and that Germany was only in a similar 
position to any other state; that every state strength- 
ened and equipped its defensive forces as thoroughly 
as possible. 

By the term "Prussian militarism'* England did not 
only mean the strength of the German army. She 
understood it to be a combination of a warlike spirit 
bent on oppressing others, and supported by the best 
and strongest army in the world. The first would 
have been innocuous without the second; and the 
splendid German army was in England's eyes the 
instrument of a domineering and conquest-loving 
autocrat. According to England's view, Germany was 
exactly the counterpart of France under Bonaparte — 
if for Napoleon be substituted a many-headed being 
called "Emperor, Crown Prince, Hindenburg, Luden- 
dorff " — and just as httle as England would treat with 
Napoleon would she have any dealings with the juridi- 
cal individual who to her was the personification of the 
lust for conquest and the policy of violence. 

The notion of the existence of German militarism 
seems to be quite justified, although the Emperor and 
the Crown Prince played the smallest part in it. But 
it seems to me an altogether wrong conception that 
mihtarism is a specialty of Germany. The negotia- 
tions at Versailles must now have convinced the general 
pubHc that it is not only on the banks of the Spree that 
militarism reigns. 

Germany in former days was never able to under- 
stand that on the enemy continent, by the side of 
morally unjustified envy, fear and anxiety as to Ger- 
many's plans practically reigned, and that the talk 


about the "hard'* and ''German" peace, about ''vic- 
tory and triumph" was Hke throwing oil on the flames 
of their fears, that in England, and France, too, at one 
time, there was a current of feeling urging for a peace 
of settlement, and that such expressions as those above 
were highly detrimental to all pacifist tendencies. 

In my opinion the air raids on England may be 
ranked in the same category as the above expressions. 
They were carried out with the greatest heroism by 
the German fliers, but no other object was gained 
but to irritate and anger England and rouse to the 
utmost resistance all who otherwise had pacifist ten- 
dencies, I said this to Ludendorfl when he called on 
me at the Ballplatz in the summer of 191 7, but it rriade 
not the slightest impression on him. 

The demarche for peace made by the Pope and our 
reply had been published in the European press. We 
accepted the noble proposals made by the Holy Father. 
I have therefore nothing to add. 

In the early part of the summer of 191 7 the Socialist 
Conference at Stockholm had become a practical 
question. I issued passports to the representatives 
of our Social Democrats, and had several difliculties 
to overcome in connection therewith. My own stand- 
point is made clear by the following letter to Tisza. 

(Not dated.) 

Dear Friend, — I hear that you do not approve of the delegation 
of Socialists for Stockhohn. To begin with, it is not a delegation. 
The men came to me of their own accord and applied for the per- 
mission to travel, which I granted. Adler, EUenbogen, and Seitz 
were there, Renner as well. The first two are capable men, and I 
value them in spite of the differences that exist between them. 
The last two are not well known to me. But all are genuinely 
desirous of peace, and Adler in particular does not wish the down- 
fall of the Empire. 

If they secure peace it will be a sociaHstic one, and the Emperor 
will have to pay out of his own pocket; I am sure too, dear friend, 


that if it is not possible to end the war, the Emperor will have to 
pay still more; you may be sure of that. 

Or, as may be expected, if they do not secure peace, then my 
prediction was all the more correct, for then I shall have proved 
to them that it is not the inefficiency of the Diplomatic Service, but 
the conditions surrounding it, that must be blamed for the war not 
coming to an end. 

If I had refused to grant permission for them to travel, they 
would have continued to the last declaring that, if they had been 
allowed to proceed, they would have secured peace. 

Every one is indignant with me here, particularly in the Herren- 
haus. They even go so far that they imagine I had tried to "buy " 
the Socialists by promising to lower the customs dues if they 
returned with peace. I do not want the dues, as you know, but 
that has no connection with Stockholm, ''Sozie" and peace. 

I was at an Austrian Cabinet Council lately and gave the death- 
blow to the customs dues — but I felt rather like Daniel in the lions' 
den when I did it; N. and E. in particular were very indignant. 
The only one who entirely shares my standpoint beside Trnka is the 
Prime Minister Clam. 

Consequently, this contention that they have been deprived of 
the octroi owing to my love for the "Sozies" angers them still more, 
but the contention is false. 

You, my dear friend, are doubly wrong. In the first place, we 
shall be forced to have SociaHst policy after the war, whether it is 
welcome or not, and I consider it extremely important to prepare 
the Social Democrats for it. Socialist poHcy is the valve we are 
bound to open in order to let off the superfluous steam, otherwise 
the boiler will burst. In the second place, none of us ministers 
can take upon ourselves the false pretense of using sabotage with 
regard to peace. The nations may perhaps tolerate the tortures 
of war for a while, but only if they understand and have the con- 
viction that it cannot be otherwise — that a vis major predominates ; 
in other words, that peace can fail owing to circumstances, but 
not owing to the bad will or stupidity of the Ministers. 

The German-Bohemian Deputy, K. H. Wolf, made a scene when 
the speech from the throne was read to the "Burg"; he declared 
that we were mad and would have to account for it to the delegation, 
and made many other equally pleasant remarks, but he had also 
come to a wrong conclusion about the customs dues and Stockholm. 

You are quite right in saying that it is no concern of Germany's 
what we do in the interior. But they have not attempted the 
slightest interference with the dues. If they are afraid of an anti' 


German rate of exchange and, therefore, are in favor of the dues, we 
are to a certain extent to blame. The BerHn people are always afraid 
of treachery. When a vessel answers the starboard hehn it means 
she turns to the right, and in order to check this movement the 
steersman must put the helm to larboard as the only way to keep a 
straight coiu-se — he must hold out. Such is the case of statecraft 
in Vienna — it is always carried out of the course of the AlUance, 

It is possible to turn and steer the Entente course if thought 
feasible; but then courage would be needed to make the turn fully. 
Nothing is more stupid than trifling with treachery and not carrying 
it out; we lose all ground in Berlin and gain nothing either in London 
or in Paris. But why should I write all this — you share my opinions ; 
I do not need to convert you. We will talk about Stockholm again. 

In true friendship, your old Czernin. 

As a matter of fact, Tisza in this instance allowed 
himself to be quite converted, and raised no objections 
as to the Hungarian Social Democrats. The negative 
result of the Stockholm Congress is already known. 

As already mentioned, it is at present still impossible 
to discuss in detail the various negotiations and at- 
tempts at peace. Besides the negotiations between 
Revertera and Armand, other tentative efforts were 
made. For instance, the interviews already alluded to 
between the Ambassador Mennsdorff and General 
Smuts, which were referred to in the EngHsh Parliament. 
I do not consider it right to say more about the matter 
here. But I can and will repeat the point of view 
which was at the bottom of all our peace efforts since 
the summer of 191 7, and which finally wrecked them all. 

The last report cited reflected the views of the 
Entente quite correctly. With Germany there was at 
present no possibility of intercourse. France insisted 
on the restoration of Alsace-Lorraine, and the entire 
Entente demanded the aboHtlon of German militarism. 
Neither would Germany be allowed to retain her colo- 
nies. But Germany was not yet ' ' ripe ' ' for this demand 
to be made. In the opinion of the Entente, therefore, 


any debate on the subject would be useless. For us 
the case was different. The impression prevailed that 
we could conclude a separate peace provided we were 
ready to make sacrifices. The London terms had 
created a situation which must be accepted. Con- 
cessions to Rumania, the cession of Trieste and the 
Trentino, as well as the German South Tyrol, to Italy, 
and concessions to the Southern Slav state would be 
unavoidable, besides reforms in the Monarchy on a 
federal basis. Our answer was that a one-sided con- 
cession of Austro-Hungarian and German territory in 
that form was, naturally, not possible. But still we 
thought that, under certain premises in the territorial 
questions, an agreement might perhaps not meet with 
insurmountable difficulties. As a matter of course, 
however, the Entente was not in a position to make 
terms such as could only be laid down by the victor 
to the vanquished, as we were anything but beaten, 
but, in spite of that, we did not cling so firmly to the 
frontier posts in the Monarchy. 

It might be thought, therefore, that, the Entente 
being willing, a settlement of the various interests 
would be possible ; but proposals such as the giving up 
of Trieste, Bozen, and Meran were impossible, as was 
also the suggestion to make peace behind Germany's 
back. I referred to the military situation and the 
impossibility of any one accepting these views of the 
Entente. I was full of confidence in the future, and 
even if that were not the case I could not conclude a 
peace in the present situation which the Entente could 
not dictate in other terms, even if we were beaten. 
To lose Trieste and access to the Adriatic was a totally 
unacceptable condition, just as much as the uncon- 
ditional surrender of Alsace-Lorraine. 

Neutral statesmen agreed with my views that the 
Entente demands were not couched in the terms of a 


peace of understanding, but of victory. Opinion in 
neutral countries was quite clear on the subject. But 
in England especially there were various currents of 
thought; not every one shared Lloyd George's views. 
The main point was, however, to lead up to a debate 
which would tend to clear up many matters, and I 
seized the idea eagerly. The greatest difficulty, I was 
assured by some, lay in the Entente's assertion that 
Germany had shown remarkable military strength, but 
yet had not been adequately prepared for war ; she had 
not had sufficient stores either of raw materials or 
provisions, and had not built sufficient U-boats. The 
Entente's idea was that if peace were made now, Ger- 
many might perhaps accept even unfavorable con- 
ditions, but it would be only to gain time and make 
use of the peace to draw breath before beginning a 
fresh war. She would make up for loss of time and 
"hit out again." The Entente, therefore, considered 
the preliminary condition of any peace, or even of a 
discussion of terms, to be the certainty of the abolition 
of German militarism. I replied that nobody wished 
for more war, and that I agreed with the Entente that a 
guaranty in that connection must be secured, but that 
a one-sided disarmament and disbanding of men by 
the Central Powers and Germany was an impossibility. 
It might be imagined what it would be like if one fine 
day an army, far advanced in the enemy country, full 
of confidence and hope and certain of victory, had to 
lay down arms and disappear. No one could accept 
such a proposal. Meanwhile, a general disarmament 
of all the Powers was both possible and necessary. 
Disarmament, the establishment of courts of arbitra- 
tion under international control; that, according to 
my idea, would present an acceptable basis. I men- 
tioned my fears that the Entente rulers in this, as in the 
territorial question, would not mete out the same meas- 


ure to themselves as they intended for us, and unless 
I had some guaranty in the matter I should not be in a 
position to carry the plan through here and with our 
allies ; anyhow, it would be worth a trial. 

Long and frequent were the debates on the Central 
European question, which was the Entente's terror, as 
it implied an unlimited increase in Germany's power. 
In Paris and London it would presumably be preferred 
that the Monarchy should be made independent of 
Germany, and any further advances to Berlin on the 
part of Vienna checked. We rejoined that to us this 
was not a new Entente standpoint, but that the mutila- 
tion caused by the resolutions of the Treaty of London 
forced us to investigate the matter. Apart from the 
question of honor and duty to the Alliance, as matters 
now stood, Germany was fighting almost more for us 
than for herself. If Germany to-day, and we knew it, 
concluded peace, she would lose Alsace-Lorraine and 
her military superiority on land; but we, with our 
territory, would have to pay the Italians, Serbians, and 
Rumanians for their part in the war. 

I heard it said on many sides that there were men 
in the Entente who readily understood this point of 
view, but that the Entente nations would do what 
they had intended. Italy had based her entry into the 
war on promises from London. Rumania also had 
been given very solid assurances, and heroic Serbia 
must be compensated by Bosnia and Herzegovina. 
Many, both in Paris and London, regretted the situa- 
tion that had arisen through the Conference in London, 
but a treaty is a treaty, and neither London nor Paris 
cotild forsake their allies. Meanwhile, it was thought 
likely in Entente circles that both the new Serbian 
and Polish states, probably Rumania as well, would 
have certain relations with the Monarchy. Further 
details respecting such relations were still unknown. 


Our reply was we would not give up Galicia to Poland, 
Transylvania and the Bukovina to Rumania, and 
Bosnia together with Herzegovina to Serbia, in return 
for a vague promise of the closer relations of those states 
with the pitiful remains left to us of the Monarchy. 
We were not impelled thereto by dynastic interests. I 
myself had persuaded the Emperor to sacrifice Galicia 
to Poland; but in Transylvania there lived so many 
Germans and Magyars who simply could not be made 
a present of, and above all the concessions to Italy! 
I once asked a neutral statesman if he could under- 
stand what was meant by making Austria voluntarily 
give up the arch-German Tyrol as far as the Brenner 
Pass. The storm that would be let loose by such a 
peace would uproot more than merely the Minister 
who had made the peace. I told my visitor that there 
were certain sacrifices which on no conditions could be 
expected of any living being. I would not give up 
German Tyrol, not even though we were still more 
unfavorably situated. I reminded him of a picture that 
represented wolves chasing a sledge. One by one the 
driver threw out fur, coat, and whatever else he had 
to the pack to check them to save himself — but he 
could not throw his own child to them; rather would he 
suffer to the last gasp. That was how I felt about 
Triest and the German Tyrol. We were not in the 
position of the man in the sledge, for, thank God, 
we had our arms and could beat off the wolves; but 
even in the extremest emergency, never would I accept 
a peace that deprived us of Bozen and Meran. 

My Hstener did not disagree with my argument, but 
could see no end to the war in that way. England was 
ready to carry on the war for another ten years and, 
in any case, would crush Germany. Not the German 
people, for whom no hatred was felt — always the same 
repetition of that deceptive argument — but German 


militarism. England was in a condition of constraint. 
Repeatedly it had been said that if Germany were not 
defeated in this war she would continue with still more 
extensive armaments. That was the firm belief in 
London; she would then, in a few years, have not one 
hundred, but one thousand, U-boats, and then England 
would be lost. Then England was also fighting for 
her own existence, and her will was iron. She knew 
that the task would be a hard one, but it would not 
crush her. In London they cite again the example of 
the wars of Napoleon, and conclude with, ''What man 
has done man can do again.'* 

This fear of Prussian militarism was noticeable on all 
occasions, and the suggestion constantly was put for- 
ward that if we were to declare ourselves satisfied with 
a general disarmament, that in itself would be a great 
advantage and an important step toward peace. 

My speech on October 2, 191 7, at Budapest, on the 
necessity of securing a reorganized world was prompted 
by the argument that militarism was the greatest ob- 
stacle in the wa^'' of any advance in that direction. 

At Budapest on that occasion I was addressing an 
audience of party leaders. I had to take into con- 
sideration that too pacifist a tone would have an effect 
at home and abroad contrary to my purpose. At home 
the lesser powers of resistance would be still further 
paralyzed, and abroad it would be taken as the end of 
our capacity for fighting, and would further check all 
friendly intentions. 

The passage in my speech relating to the securing of a 
new world organization is as follows: 

The great French statesman, Talleyrand, is supposed to^ have 
said words are merely to conceal thoughts. It may be that it was 
true respecting the diplomacy of his century, but I cannot imagine 
a maxim less smted to the present day. The millions who are fight- 
ing, whether in the trenches or behind the lines, wish to know why 


and wherefore they are fighting. They have a right to know why 
peace, which all the world is longing for, has not yet been made. 

When I entered upon office I seized the first opportunity openly 
to state that we should commit no violence, but that we should 
tolerate none, and that we were ready to enter into peace negotia- 
tions as soon as our enemies accepted the point of view of a peace 
of understanding. I think I have thus clearly explained, though on 
broad Hnes only, the peace idea of the Austro-Himgarian Monarchy. 
Many at home and also in friendly countries abroad have reproached 
me for speaking so openly. The argiunents of the said critical 
gentlemen have only confirmed my belief of the justness of my 
views. I take nothing back of what I said, convinced as I am 
that the great majority of people here and in Austria approve my 
attitude. Following on these introductory remarks, I feel called 
upon to-day to tell the public how the imperial and royal govern- 
ment will deal with the further development of the utterly distorted 
European conditions. 

Our program for the reconstruction of the world organization, 
preferably to be called the building of a new world organization, is 
given in our answer to the peace note of the Holy Father. It, there- 
fore, only remains for me to-day to complete the program and, 
above all, to state what were the considerations that decided us to 
accept the principles that overthrow the former system. It will 
come as a surprise to many, and perhaps appear incomprehensible, 
that the Central Powers, and especially Austria-Hungary, should 
be willing to desist from future military armament, as it is only 
their military power that has protected them through these trying 
years against vastly superior forces. 

Not only has the war created new factors and conditions, but 
it has also led to new conceptions which have shattered the founda- 
tions of former European policy. Among many other political 
theses, the one which held that Austria-Hungary was an expiring 
state has vanished. The dogma of the impending collapse of the 
Monarchy was what made our position in Europe more difficult and 
caused all the misunderstanding concerning our vital needs. But 
having shown ourselves in this war to be thoroughly sound and, at 
any rate, of equal standing, it follows that we can reckon now on a 
proper imderstanding of oiu" vital needs in Europe and that no 
hopes are left of being able to beat us down by force of arms. Until 
the moment had arrived when this could be proved, we could not do 
without the protection of armaments nor expose ourselves to un- 
favorable treatment in the matters vital to us produced by the 
legend of our impending collapse. But from that moment, we have 


been in the position simultaneously with our enemies to lay down 
arms and settle our difficulties peacefully and by arbitration. This 
being recognized by the world affords us the possibility of not only 
accepting the plan of disarmament and a court of arbitration, but, 
as you, gentlemen, are aware, of working with all our energy for its 
realization, as we have for some time past. 

After this war, Europe must doubtless be placed on a new juridical 
basis of which the permanency can be guaranteed. This juridical 
basis will, I beHeve, be of a fourfold nature: 

In the first place, it must furnish a guaranty that there shall 
be no war of revenge on any side ; we must make sure that we can 
bequeath to our children's children the knowledge that they will be 
spared the horrors of a time similar to that which we have under- 
gone. No shifting of power in the belligerent states can achieve 
that. The only manner by which it can be attained is international 
disarmament throughout the world and acceptance of the principle 
of arbitration. It is needless to say that these measures for dis- 
armament must not be confined to one separate state or to a single 
group of Powers, and that they apply equally to land, water, and 
air. War as a factor in policy must be combated. A general, uni- 
form and progressive disarmament of all the states in the world 
must be established on an international basis and under international 
control, and the defensive forces limited to the utmost. I am well 
aware that this object will be difficult to achieve and that the path 
that leads thereto is long and thorny and full of difficulties. And 
yet I am firmly convinced it is a path that must be trodden and will 
be trodden, no matter whether it is approved of individuals or not. 
It is a great mistake to imagine that after such a war the world can 
begin from where it left off in 19 14. A catastrophe such as this 
war does not pass by and leave no trace, and the most terrible mis- 
fortune that could happen to us would be if the race for armaments 
were to continue after the conclusion of peace, for it would mean 
the economic ruin of all states. Before the war began the military 
burdens to be borne were heavy — though we specially note that 
Austria-Hungary was far from being on a high level of military 
preparedness when we were surprised by the outbreak of war, and 
it was only during the war that she resumed her armaments — but 
after this war an open competition in armaments would render state 
burdens all round simply intolerable. In order to keep a high 
standard of armaments in open competition all the states would have 
to secure a tenfold supply of everything — ten times the artillery, 
munition-factories, vessels, and U-boats of former days, and also 
many more soldiers to work the machinery. The annual military 


budget of all the Great Powers would comprise many milliards — it 
would be impossible, with all the other burdens which the belligerent 
states will have to bear after peace is concluded. This expense, 
I repeat, would mean the ruin of the nations. To return, however, 
to the relatively limited armaments in existence previous to 19 14 
would be quite impossible, for any individual state which would 
be so far behind that its military strength would not count. The 
expense incurred would be futile. But were it possible to return to 
the relatively low level of armaments in 19 14, that in itself would 
signify an international lowering of armaments. But then there 
would be no sense in not going farther and practically disarming 

There is but one egress from this narrow defile: the absolute 
international disarmament of the world. There is no longer any 
object in such colossal fleets if the states of the world guarantee 
the freedom of the seas, and armies must be reduced to the lowest 
limit requisite for the maintenance of order in the interior. This 
will only be possible on an international basis; that is, under inter- 
national control. Every state will have to cede some of its indepen- 
dence to insure a world peace. The present generation will prob- 
ably not live to see this great pacifist movement fully completed. 
It cannot be carried out rapidly, but I consider it our duty to put 
ourselves at the head of the movement and do all that lies in human 
power to hasten its achievement. The conclusion of peace will 
establish the fundamental principles. 

If the first principle be laid down as the compulsory international 
arbitration system as well as general disarmament on land, the 
second one must be that of the freedom of the high seas and dis- 
armament at sea. I purposely say the high seas, as I do not extend 
the idea to straits or channels, and I readily allow that special rules 
and regulations must be laid down for the connecting sea routes. 
If these two factors have been settled and assured, any reason 
for territorial adjustments on the plea of insuring national safety 
is done away with, and this forms the third fundamental principle 
of the new international juridical basis. This idea is the gist of the 
beautiful and sublime note that His Holiness the Pope addressed 
to the whole worldo We have not gone to war to make conquests, 
and we have no aggressive plans. If the international disarmament 
that we so heartily are longing for be adopted by our present enemies 
and becomes a fact, then we are in no need of assurances of territorial 
safety; in that case, we can give up the idea of expanding the 
Austro-Hungarian Monarchy, provided, of course, that the enemy 
has entirely evacuated our own territory. 



The fourth principle to enforce in order to insure a free and 
peaceful development of the world after the hard times we have 
experienced is the free economic participation by every one and the 
unconditional avoidance of an economic war; a war of that nature 
must be excluded from all future contingencies. Before we con- 
clude peace we must have the positive assurance that our present 
enemies have given up that idea. 

Those, my honorable friends, are the principles of the new world 
organization as it presents itself to me, and they are all based on 
general disarmament. Germany, in her answer to the papal note, 
has also positively recognized the idea of a general disarmament. 
Our present enemies have likewise, partly, at any rate, adopted 
these principles. I differ from Lloyd George in most points, 
but agree thoroughly on one — that there nevermore should be a war 
of revenge. 

The impression made by my speech on the Entente 
surpassed the most pessimistic expectations. In order 
not to approach too closely the subject of their own 
disarmament, my propositions were said to be hypo- 
critical and a peace trap. This needs no comment. 

Had the Entente replied that I must obtain the sup- 
port of and secure a guaranty from Germany that 
she would disarm, it would have been an opportu- 
nity for me, with the help of the nations, to exercise 
the greatest possible pressure on Germany's leaders. 
But the sword was knocked out of my hand by them 
themselves, for the retort came from Berlin: Here is 
the proof that the Entente rejects our offer of disarma- 
ment as they reject everything coming from us. There 
is only one way out of it — a fight to the end and then 

Again did the Entente force the peoples of the 
Central Powers to side unconditionally with the 

Never in the whole term of my office did I receive 
so many letters as after my speech — both for and 
against, with both sides equally impetuous. "Death 
sentences" from Germany were showered on me; scorn 


and contempt alternated with genuine sympathy and 

In the autumn of 191 7 the peace movement di- 
minished visibly. The U-boat fiasco was very obvious. 
England saw that she was able to overcome the dan- 
ger. The German military leaders still spoke of the 
positively expected successes of their submarines, 
but the tenor of their predictions became very different. 
There was no longer any talk of the downfall of Eng- 
land within a few months. A new winter campaign 
was almost a certainty, and yet the Germans insisted 
that, though mistakes occurred in the term fixed, this 
was not so respecting the effect of the U-boats, and that 
England would collapse. The U-boat warfare had 
achieved this amount of success, that the western 
front remained intact, though it would otherwise have 

The military situation underwent a change in the 
autumn. The end of the war in the east was within 
sight, and the possibility of being able to fling the 
enormous masses of troops from the east into the line 
in the west, and at last break through there, greatly 
improved the situation. 

It was not the U-boat campaign that brought about 
a decision at sea, but it enabled a final decision on land 
to be made; such was the new military opinion. Paris 
and Calais could not be taken. 

In these different phases of military hopes and ex- 
pectations we floated like a boat on a stormy sea. In 
order to land in the haven of peace we needed a mili- 
tary wave to carry us nearer to the land; then only 
could we unfurl the sail of understanding that would 
help us to reach the saving shores. As long as the 
enemy persisted only in dealing with the crushed and 
depopulated Central Powers all was in vain. 

I never believed in the success of the U-boat warfare. 


I believed in a break-through on the western front, 
and during the winter of 191 7-18 Hved in the hope 
that by such means we might break the obstinate love 
of destruction in our enemies. 

As long as our adversaries' peace terms remained 
the same peace was impossible, as was also the bringing 
of any outside pressure to bear on Germany, for it was 
true that "the German army was fighting more to 
support Austria-Hungary than it was for its own 

Threatening and breathing disaster, the decisions 
of the Treaty of London confronted us. They forced 
us always to take up arms again, and drove us back 
into the field. 

• •••••• 

At the time of writing these lines, in June, 1919, 
Austria has long ceased to exist. There is only left 
now a small, impoverished, wretched land called Ger- 
man-Austria, a country without army or money; help- 
less, starving, and well-nigh in despair. This country- 
has been told of the peace terms at St. -Germain. It 
has been told it must give up the Tyrol as far as the 
Brenner Pass, that Andreas Hofer's mountains are 
to be handed over to Italy. And defenseless and 
helpless as it is, it sends up a cry of despair and frantic 
grief. One voice only is heard — such peace is impos- 
sible ! 

How could an Austrian government accept the 
dictates of London at a time when our armies stood 
far advanced in enemy country, unvanquished and 
unbroken, when we had for ally the strongest land 
Power in the world, and when the greatest generals 
of the war so firmly beHeved in the break-through and 
in final victory? 

To demand that in 1917 or 1918 I should have 
accepted peace terms which in 1919 were rejected by 


the whole of the German-Austrian people is sheer 
madness. But it may be there is method in such 
madness. The method of using every means to dis- 
credit the ''old regime." 

• •••••• 

In the beginning of August, 191 7, an effort was 
made at a rapprochement between England and Ger- 
many which, unfortunately, almost immediately broke 

At the suggestion of England a neutral Power had 
sounded Germany with regard to Belgium. Germany 
replied that she was ready for direct verbal negotia- 
tions with England on the Belgian question. In trans- 
mitting this favorable answer, Germany did not intrust 
it to the same neutral Power that had brought the 
message, but for some unknown reason confided it to a 
trusted messenger from another neutral country. This 
latter appears to have been guilty of some indiscreet 
dealings, and when rumors of the affair reached Paris 
it caused some anxiety. It was probably thought 
there that England was more interested in the Belgian 
than in the Alsace-Lorraine question. 

The messenger sent from Berlin thought that his 
task had failed, and sent word to Berlin that, owing 
to his errand having been made known, the opinion 
among the Entente was that every step taken by 
Germany was condemned beforehand to failure. 

The government which had employed the messenger 
took up the case on its own initiative, and transmitted 
the German reply to London. No answer was ever 
received from England. 

This is the account as given to me post festum by 
Berlin, and doubtless reflects Berlin's views. Whether 
the incident in detail was exactly as described, or 
whether many more hitherto unknown events took 
place, has not been proved. 


During the war all happenings on the other side of 
the trenches were looked upon with dim and gloomy- 
eyes as through a veil, and, according to news received 
by me later, it was not clear whether England had 
sent an answer. Whether it was despatched and held 
up on the way, or what became of it I never knew. 
It is said never to have reached Berlin. 

A warlike speech by Asquith on September 27 th 
appears to be connected with this unsuccessful attempt, 
and served to calm the Allies. 

It appears extremely doubtful to me, however, 
whether this advance would have led to anything, 
had the occasion been more favorable. The previously 
mentioned letter of the Imperial Chancellor Michaelis 
dates from those August days, a letter referring to 
Belgian projects which were very far removed from the 
English ideas on the subject. And even if it had been 
possible to settle the Belgian question, there would 
have been the Alsace-Lorraine question, which linked 
France and England together, and, first and foremost, 
the question of disarmament. The chasm that di voided 
the two camps would have grown so wide that no 
bridge could possibly have spanned it. 

Not until January, 191 8, did I learn the English 
version. According to that, the Germans are said 
to have taken the first steps, and the English were not 
disinclined to listen, but heard nothing further. It 
was stated in Vorwdrts that the suggestion was made 
at the instigation of the Cabinet Council, but that 
subsequently military influence gained the upper hand. 
The episode did not tend to improve the frame of 
mind of the leading men in England. 

• »••••• 

In the early summer of 191 7 conditions seemed favor- 
able for peace and the hope of arriving at an under- 
standing, though still far distant, was not exactly a 


Utopian dream. How far the hope of splitting our 
group and the failure of the U-boat warfare may have 
contributed to stiffen the desire for war in the Entente 
countries cannot definitely be stated. Both factors 
had a share in it. Before we came to a deadlock in the 
negotiations, the position was such that even in case 
of a separate peace we should have been compelled to 
accept the terms of the Conference of London. Whether 
the Entente would have abandoned that basis if we 
had not veered from the straight course, and by un- 
official cross-purposes become caught in the toils of 
separatist desires, but had quickty and consistently 
carried out our task, is not proved, and never will be. 
After the debacle in the winter of 191 9 it was intimated 
to me as a fact that when Clemenceau came into power 
a peace of understanding with Germany became out 
of the question. His standpoint was that Germany 
must be definitely vanquished and crushed. Our 
negotiations, however, had begun under Briand, and 
Clemenceau only came into power when the peace 
negotiations had become entangled and were beginning 
to falter. 

With regard to Austria-Hungary, both France and 
England would have welcomed a separate peace on 
our part, even during Clemenceau's period of office; 
but in that case we should have had to accept the terms 
of the London Conference. 

Such was the peace question then. How it would 
have developed if no misleading policy had come into 
being naturally cannot be stated. 

I am not putting forward suppositions, but confirming 
facts. And the fact remains,, that the failure of the 
U-boat campaign, on the one hand, and a policy carried 
on behind the backs of the responsible men, on the other 
hand, were the reasons why the favorable moment 
passed and the peace efforts were checked. And I 


herewith repeat that this fact does not in itself prove 
that peace negotiations would not also have failed 
later if the two reasons mentioned above had not 


It became quite clear in the autumn that the war 
would have to continue. In my speeches to delegations 
I endeavored to leave no doubt that we were faithful 
to our allies. When I said, ' ' I see no difference between 
Strassburg and Trieste," I said it chiefly for Sofia and 
Constantinople, for the overthrow of the Quadruple 
AlHance was the greatest danger. I still hoped to be 
able to prop the trembling foundations of the Alliance 
policy, and either to secure a general peace in the 
east, where the mihtary opposition was giving way, 
or to see it draw nearer through the anticipated German 
break-through on the western front. 

Several months after my dismissal in the summer of 
1 91 8 I spoke in the Herrenhaus on foreign policy, and 
warned every one present against trying to undermine 
the Quadruple Alliance. When I declared that "honor, 
duty to the AlHance, and the call for self-preservation 
compel us to fight by the side of Germany," I was mis- 
understood. It did not seem as though the public 
reahzed that the moment the Entente thought the 
Quadruple Alliance was about to break up, from that 
moment our cause was lost. Had the public no knowl- 
edge of the London agreement? Did it not know that 
a separate peace would hand us over totally defenseless 
to those cruel conditions? Did they not realize that 
the German army was the shield that afforded us the 
last and only possibility of escaping the fate of being 
broken up? 

My successor steered the same course as I had done, 
doubtless from the same reasons of honor and the call 
for self-preservation. I have no particulars as to what 
occurred in the summer of 1918. 


Afterward events followed in rapid succession. First 
came our terrible defeat in Italy, then the Entente 
break-through on the western front, and finally the 
Bulgarian secession, which had gradually been ap- 
proaching since the summer of 191 7. 


As is the case in all countries, among the Entente 
during the war there were many and varied currents 
of thought. When Clemenceau came into office the 
definite destruction of Germany was the dominant 
war aim. 

To those who neither see nor hear the secret informa- 
tion which a Foreign Minister naturally has at his dis- 
posal, it may appear as though the Entente, in the 
question of crushing Germany's military strength, 
had sometimes been ready to make concessions. I 
think that this may have been the case in the spring 
of 191 7, but not later, when any such hope was decep- 
tive. Lansdowne in particular spoke and wrote in a 
somewhat friendly tone, but Lloyd George was the 
determining influence in England. 

When sounding England on different occasions, I 
endeavored to discover by what means the dissolution 
of the military power in Germany was to be or could be 
guaranteed — and I invariably came to an impasse. 
It was never explained how England intended to carry 
out the proposal. 

The truth is that there is no way of disarming a strong 
and determined people except by defeating them, 
but such an aim was not to ^be openly admitted to us 
in the preliminary dealings. The delegates could not 
suggest any suitable mode of discussion, and no other 
proposals could lead to a decision. 

Lansdowne, and perhaps Asquith as well, would havQ 


been content with a parliamentary regime which would 
have deprived the Emperor of power and given it to the 
Reichstag. Not so Lloyd George; at least, not later. 
The English Prime Minister's well-known speech, "A 
disarmament treaty with Germany would be a treaty 
between a fox and many geese," conveyed what he 
really thought. 

After my Budapest speech, which was treated with 
such scorn and contempt in the press and by public 
opinion on the other side of the Channel, word was 
sent to me from an English source that it was said the 
"Czernin scheme" might settle the question. But 
again it was not Lloyd George who said that. 

Owing to the extreme distrust that Clemenceau, the 
English Prime Minister, and with them the great 
majority in France and England, had of Germany's 
intentions, no measure could be devised that would 
have given London and Paris a sufficient guaranty for 
a future peaceful policy. From the summer of 191 7, no 
matter what Germany had proposed, Lloyd George 
would always have rejected it as inadequate. 

In consequence of this it was quite immaterial later 
to the course of the war that Germany not only did 
nothing whatever to allay English fears, but, on the 
contrary, poured oil in the fire and fanned the flames. 

Germany, the leading military Power in the war, 
never for one moment thought of agreeing to disarma- 
ment under international control. After my speech in 
Budapest I was received in Berlin not in an unfriendly 
manner, but with a sort of pity, as some poor insane 
person might be treated. The subject was avoided 
as much as possible. Erzberger alone told me of his 
complete agreement with me. 

Had Germany been victorious her militarism would 
have increased enormously. In the summer of 191 7 
I spoke to several generals of high standing on the 


western front, who unanimously declared that after 
the war armaments must be maintained, but on a very 
much greater scale. They compared this war with the 
first Punic War. It would be continued and its con- 
tinuation be prepared for; in short, the tactics of 
Versailles. The standard of violence must be planted, 
and would be the banner of the generals, the Pan- 
Germans, the Fatherland party, etc. They thought 
as little about a reconciliation of the nations after the 
war as did the Supreme Council of Four at Versailles, 
and Emperor, government and Reichstag floundered 
helplessly in this torrent of violent purpose. 

The military spirit flourished on the Spree as it is 
doing now on the Seine and the Thames. Lloyd George 
and Clemenceau will find many counterparts of them- 
selves at the Unter den Linden in Berlin. The only 
difference between Foch and Ludendorff is that the 
one is a Frenchman and the other a German; as men 
they are as like as two peas. 

The Entente is victorious, and many millions are 
delighted and declare that the policy of might is justi- 
fied. The future only can show whether this is not a 
terrible mistake. The lives of hundreds of thousands 
of young, hopeful men who have fallen might have been 
saved if in 191 7 peace had been made possible for us. 
The triumph of victory cannot call them back to life 
again. It appears to me that the Entente has con- 
quered too much, too thoroughly. The madness of 
expiring militarism, in spite of all its orgies, has perhaps 
celebrated its last triumph at Versailles. 


Taking it all together, the real historical truth con- 
cerning the peace movement is that, in general, neither 
the Entente nor the ruling, all-powerful military party 


in Germany wished for a peace of understanding. 
They both wished to be victorious and to enforce a 
peace of violence on the defeated adversary. The 
leading men in Germany — Ludendorff above all — never 
had a genuine intention of releasing Belgium in an 
economic and political sense ; neither would they agree 
to any sacrifices. They wished to conquer in the east 
and the west, and their arbitrary tendencies counter- 
acted the pacifist leaning of the Entente as soon as 
there were the slightest indications of it. On the other 
hand, the leading men in the Entente — Clemenceau 
from the first and Lloyd George later — were firmly 
resolved to crush Germany, and therefore profited by 
the continuous German threats to suppress all pacifist 
movements in their own countries, always ready to 
prove that a peace of understanding with Berlin would 
be a ''pact between the fox and the geese." 

Thanks to the attitude of the leading Ministers in 
Germany, the Entente was fully persuaded that an 
understanding with Germany was quite out of the 
question, and insisted obstinately on peace terms 
which could not be accepted by a Germany still un- 
beaten. This closes the circular vitiosus which para- 
lyzed all negotiating activities. 

We were wedged in between these two movements 
and unable to strike out for ourselves, because the 
Entente, bound by its promises to its allies, had already 
disposed of us by the Treaty of London and the under- 
takings to Rumania and Serbia. We therefore could 
not exercise extreme pressure on Germany, as we were 
unable to effect the annulment of those treaties. 

In the early summer of 191 7 the possibiHty of an 
understanding seemed to show itself on the horizon, but 
it was wrecked by the previously mentioned events. 



THROUGH the dwindling away of the inclinatior 
for peace in the enemy camp we were faced in the 
autumn of 191 7 by the prospect either of concluding 
separate peace and accepting the many complicatec 
consequences of a war with Germany and the ensuing 
mutilation of the Monarchy under the terms of the 
Treaty of London, or else fighting on and, aided by 
our allies, breaking the will for destruction of our 

If Russia was the one to let loose war, it was Italy 
who perpetually stood in the way of a peace of under- 
standing, insisting upon obtaining under all circum- 
stances the whole of the Austrian territory promised to 
her in 191 5. The Entente during the war assigned 
the several parts to be enacted. France was to shed 
the most blood; England, besides her fabulous military 
action, to finance the war, together with America, and 
diplomatic affairs to be in Italy's hands. Far too little 
is known as yet, and will only later be public knowledge, 
as to the extent to which Italian diplomacy dominated 
affairs during the war. Our victories in Italy would 
only have changed the situation if the defeats that were 
suffered had led to an Italian revolution and a complete 
overthrow of the regime existing there. In other words, 
the royal government would not be infiuenced in its 
attitude by our victories. Even had our armies 


advanced much farther than they did, it would have 
held to its standpoint in the expectation that, perhaps 
not Italy herself, but her allies, would secure final 

Such was the situation in the autumn of 191 7 when 
Wilson came forward with his Fourteen Points. 

The advantage of the Wilson program in the eyes of 
the whole world was its violent contrast to the terms 
of the Treaty of London. The right of self-determina- 
tion for the nations had been utterly ignored in London 
by the allotment of German Tyrol to Italy. Wilson 
forbade this and declared that nations could not be 
treated against their will and moved hither and thither 
like the pieces in a game of chess. Wilson said that 
every solution of a territorial question arising out of 
this war must be arrived at in the interests and in 
favor of the peoples concerned, and not as a mere 
balancing or compromise of claims from rival sources; 
and further, that all clearly stated national claims 
would receive the utmost satisfaction that could be 
afforded them, without admitting new factors or the 
perpetuation of old disputes or oppositions, which in 
all probability would soon again disturb the peace of 
Europe and the whole world. A general peace, estab- 
lished on such a basis, could be discussed — and more 
in the same strain. 

The publication of this clear and absolutely accept- 
able program seemed from day to day to render possible 
a peaceful solution of the world conflict. In the eyes 
of millions of people this program opened up a world 
of hope. A new star had risen on the other side of the 
ocean, and all eyes were turned in that direction. A 
mighty man had come forward and with one powerful 
act had upset the London Resolutions and, in so doing, 
had reopened the gates for a peace of understanding. 

From the first moment the main question was, so it 


seemed, what hopes were there of Wilson's program 
being carried out in London, Paris, and, above all, in 

Secret information sent to me from the Entente 
countries seemed to suggest that the Fourteen Points 
were decidedly not drawn up in agreement with Eng- 
land, France, and Italy. On the other hand, I was, 
and still am, fully persuaded that Wilson had spoken 
honestly and sincerely and, as a matter of fact, believed 
that his program could be carried out. 

Wilson's great miscalculation was his mistaken esti- 
mate of the actual distribution of power in the Entente, 
on the one hand, and his surprising ignorance of na- 
tional relationships in Europe, and especially in Austria- 
Hungary, on the other hand, which would greatly 
weaken his position and his influence on his allies. 
There would be no difficulty in the Entente's cleverly 
introducing Wilson into the international labyrinth 
and there bewildering him with wrong directions, so 
that he could not find his way out again. To begin 
with, therefore, Wilson's theory brought us not a step 

The '67 settlement was proposed by a leading Ger- 
man-Magyar magnate in Austria-Hungary. Fifty years 
ago nationalism was much less developed than it is now. 
Nations were still sleeping. The Czechs, Slovaks, and 
Southern Slavs, the Rumanians and Ruthenians, had 
barely awakened to national Hfe. Fifty years ago it 
was possible to distinguish between what was deceptive 
and what gave promise of lasting. The union between 
Italians and Germans only took effect with the coming 
of — or was perhaps the first sign of — the world-move- 
ment. At all events, it was ih the second half of the 
last century that we came within the radius of inter- 
national politics. 

The world's racial problems found a center in Austria- 


Hungary, whose affairs, therefore, became very promi- 
nent. A chemist can inclose in his retorts different 
substances and observe how, following the eternal laws 
of nature, the processes of nature take place. In a 
similar way during past decades the effect of unsolved 
racial antagonisms might have been studied within 
the Hapsburg Monarchy and the inevitable explosion 
anticipated, instead of its being allowed to culminate 
in the World War. 

In putting forward his Fourteen Points Mr. Wilson 
obviously felt the necessity of setthng the world prob- 
lem of nationality and recognized that the Hapsburg 
Monarchy, once arranged and settled, could serve as 
a model to the world, as hitherto it had afforded a 
terrifying example. But to begin with, he overlooked 
the fact that in the settling of national questions there 
must be neither adversary nor ally, as these reflect 
passing differences, whereas the problem of nationality 
is a permanent one. He also ignored the fact that 
what applies to the Czechs appHes also to Ireland, that 
the Armenians as well as the Ukrainians desire to live 
their own national Hfe, and that the colored peoples 
of Africa and India are human beings with the same 
rights as white people. He also failed to see that 
good will and the desire for justice are far from being 
sufficient in themselves to solve the problem of nation- 
ality. Thus it was that under his patronage, and 
presumably on the basis of the Fourteen Points, the 
question of nationality was not solved, but simply 
turned round where not actually left untouched. If 
Germans and Magyars had hitherto been the domi- 
nating races they would now become the oppressed. 
By the terms settled at Versailles they were to be 
handed over to states of other nationality. Ten years 
hence, perhaps sooner, both groups of Powers as they 
exist at present will have fallen. Other constellations 


will have appeared and become dominant. The 
explosive power of unsolved questions will continue 
to take effect and within a measurable space of time 
again blow up the world. 

Mr. Wilson, who evidently was acquainted with the 
program of the Treaty of London, though not attaching 
sufficient importance to the national difficulties, proba- 
bly hoped to be able to effect a compromise between 
the Italian policy of conquest and his own ideal policy. 
In this connection, however, no bridge existed between 
Rome and Washington. Conquests are made by right 
of the conqueror — such was Clemenceau's and Orlando's 
policy — or else the world is ruled on the piinciples of 
national justice, as Wilson wished it to be. This ideal, 
however, will not be attained — no ideal is obtainable; 
but it will be brought very much nearer. Might or 
right, the one alone can conquer. But Czechs, Poles, 
and others cannot be freed while at the same time 
Tyrolese-Germans, Alsatian-Germans, and Transyl- 
vanian-Hungarians are handed over to foreign states. 
It cannot be done from the point of view of justice or 
with any hope of its being permanent. Versailles and 
St.-Germain have proved that it can be done by might 
and as a temporary measure. 

The solution of the question of nationality was the 
point round which all Franz Ferdinand's political in- 
terests were centered during his lifetime. Whether he 
would have succeeded is another question, but he cer- 
tainly did try. The Emperor Charles, too, was not 
averse to the movement. The Emperor Francis 
Joseph was too old and too conservative to make the 
experiment. His idea was quieta non mover e. Without 
powerful help from outside, any attempt during the 
war against the German-Magyar opposition would 
not have been feasible. Therefore, when Wilson came 
forward with his Fourteen Points, and in spite of the 



skepticism with which the message from Washington 
was received by the German pubHc and here, too, I 
at once resolved to take up the thread. 

I repeat that I never doubted the honorable and 
sincere intentions entertained by Wilson — nor do I 
doubt them now — but my doubts as to his powers of 
carrying them out were from the first very pronounced. 
It was obvious that Wilson, when conducting the war, 
was much stronger than when he took part in the Peace 
Conference. As long as fighting proceeded Wilson 
was master of the world. He had only to call back his 
troops from the European theater of war and the 
Entente would be placed in a most difficult position. 
It has always been incomprehensible to me why the 
President of the United States did not have recourse 
to this strong pressure during this time in order to 
preserve his own war aims. 

The secret information that I received soon after the 
publication of the Fourteen Points led me to fear that 
Wilson, not understanding the situation, would fail 
to take any practical measures to secure respect for the 
regulations he had laid down, and that he underesti- 
mated France's, and particularly Italy's, opposition. 
The logical and practical consequences of the Wilson 
program would have been the public annulment of 
the Treaty of London; it must have been so for us to 
understand the principles on which we could enter 
upon peace negotiations. Nothing of that nature 
occurred, and the gap between Wilson and Orlando's 
ideas of peace remained open. 

On January 24, 19 18, in the Committee of the Aus- 
trian Delegation, I spoke publicly on the subject of the 
Fourteen Points and declared them to be — in so far as 
they applied to us and not to our allies — a suitable 
basis for negotiations. Almost simultaneously we took 
steps to enlighten ourselves on the problem of how in 


a practical way the fourteen theoretical ideas of Wilson 
could be carried out. The negotiations were then by no 
means hopeless. 

Meanwhile the Brest negotiations were proceeding. 
Although that episode, which represented a victory for 
German militarism, cannot have been very encouraging 
for Wilson, he was wise enough to recognize that we 
were in an awkward position and that the charge 
brought against her that Germany was making hidden 
annexations did not apply to Vienna. On February 
12th — thus, after the conclusion of the Brest peace — 
the President, in his speech to Congress, said: 

Count Czernin appears to have a clear understanding of the peace 
foundations and does not obscure their sense. He sees that an 
independent Poland composed of all the undeniably Polish inhabi- 
tants, the one bordering on the other, is a matter for European 
settlement and must be granted; further, that Belgium must be 
evacuated and restored, no matter what sacrifices and concessions 
it may involve; also that national desires must be satisfied, 
even in his own Empire, in the common interests of Europe and 

Though he is silent on certain matters more closely connected 
with the interests of his allies than with Austria-Hungary, that is 
only natural, because he feels compelled under the circumstances 
to refer to Germany and Turkey. Recognizing and agreeing with 
the important principles in question and the necessity of converting 
them into action, he naturally feels that Austria-Hungary, more 
easily than Germany, can concur with the war aims as expressed 
by the United States. He would probably have gone even further 
had he not been constrained to consider the Austro-Hungarian 
Alliance and the country's dependence on Germany. 

In the same speech the President goes on to say : 

Count Czernin's answer referring mainly to my speech of Janu- 
ary 8th is couched in very friendly terms. He sees in my statements 
a stifficiently encouraging approach to the views of his own govern- 
ment to justify his belief that they afford a basisjor a thorough 
discussion by both governments of the aims. 


And again: 

I must say Count Hertling's answer is very undecided and most 
confusing, full of equivocal sentences, and it is difficult to say what 
it aims at. It certainly is written in a very different tone from that 
of Count Czernin's speech and obviously with a very different object 
in view. 

There can be no doubt that when the head of a state 
at war with us speaks in such friendly terms of the 
Minister of Foreign Affairs he has the best intentions 
of coming to an understanding. My efforts in this 
connection were interrupted by my dismissal. 

In these last weeks during which I remained in ofiQce 
the Emperor had definitely lost faith in me. This was 
not due to the Wilson question, nor yet was it the direct 
consequence of my general poHcy. A difference of 
opinion between certain persons in the Emperor's 
entourage and myself was the real reason. The situa- 
tion became so strained as to make it unbearable. 
The forces that conspired against me convinced me 
that it would be impossible for me to gain my objective, 
which, being of a very difficult nature, could not be ob- 
tained unless the Emperor gave me his full confidence. 

In spite of all the rumors and stories spread about 
me, I do not intend to go into details unless I should be 
compelled to do so by accounts derived from reliable 
sources. I am still convinced to this day that morally 
I was perfectly right. I was wrong as to form, because 
I was neither clever nor patient enough to bend the 
opposition, but would have broken it by reducing the 
situation to a case of ''either — or." 



IN the autumn of 191 7 I had a visit from a subject 
of a neutral state, who is a pronounced upholder 
of general disarmament and world pacifism. We began, 
of course, to discuss the theme of free competition in 
armaments, of militarism, which in England prevails 
on the sea and in Germany on land, and my visitor 
entered upon the various possibilities likely to occur 
when the w^ar was at an end. He had no faith in the 
destruction of England, nor had I; but he thought it 
possible that France and Italy might collapse. The 
French and Italians could not possibly bear any 
heavier burdens than already were laid on them; in 
Paris and Rome, he thought, revolution was not far 
distant, and a fresh phase of the war would then ensue. 
England and America would continue to fight on alone, 
for ten, perhaps even twenty, years. England was 
not to be considered just a little island, but comprised 
Australia, India, Canada, and the sea. "UAngleterre 
est imbattable,'' he repeated, and America likewise. 
On the other hand, the German army was also invin- 
cible. The secession of France and Italy would greatly 
hinder the cruel blockade, for the resources of those two 
countries — once they were conquered by the Central 
Powers — were very vast, and in that case he could not 
see any end to the war. Finally, the world would 
collapse from the general state of exhaustion. My 


visitor cited the fable in which two goats met on a 
narrow bridge; neither would give way to the other, 
and they fought until they both fell into the water 
and were drowned. The victory of one group, as in 
previous wars, he continued, where the conqueror 
gleaned a rich harvest of gains and the vanquished 
had to bear all the losses, was out of the question in 
this present war. Tout le monde perdera, et d la fin il n'y 
aura que des vaincus. 

I often recalled that interview later. Much that 
was false and yet, as it seemed to me, much that was 
true, lay in my friend's words. France and Italy did 
not break down ; the end of the war came more quickly 
than he thought; and the invincible Germany was 
defeated. And still I think that the conclusions he 
arrived at came very near the truth. 

The conquerors' finances are in a very precarious 
state, particularly in Italy and France ; unrest prevails ; 
wages are exorbitant; discontent is general; the phan- 
tom of Bolshevism leers at them; and they live in the 
hope that the defeated Central Powers will have to pay, 
and they will thus be saved. It was set forth in the 
peace terms, but ultra posse nemo tenetur, and the 
future will show to what extent the Central Powers can 
fulfil the conditions dictated to them. 

Since the opening of the Peace Congress at Versailles 
continued war in Europe has been declared: Russians 
against the whole world, Czechs against Hungarians, 
Rumanians against Hungarians, Poles against Ukrain- 
ians, Southern Slavs against Germans, communists 
against socialists. Three-fourths of Europe is turned 
into a witch's caldron where everything is concocted 
except work and production, and it is futile to ask 
how this self-lacerated Europe will be able to find the 
war expenses laid upon her. According to human 
reckoning, the conquerors cannot extract even approxi- 


mate compensation for their losses from the defeated 
states, and their victory will terminate with a con- 
siderable deficit. If that be the case, then my visitor 
will be right — there will only be the vanquished. 

If our plan in 191 7, namely, Germany to cede Alsace- 
Lorraine to France in exchange for the annexation of 
all Poland, together with Galicia, and all states to dis- 
arm — if that plan had been accepted in Berlin and 
sanctioned by the Entente — unless the non possumus 
in Berlin and opposition in Rome to a change in the 
Treaty of London had hindered any action — it seems 
to me the advantage would not only have been on the 
side of the Central Powers. 

Pyrrhus also conquered at Asculum. 

My visitor was astonished at Vienna. The psy- 
chology of no city that he had seen during the war 
could compare with that of Vienna. An amazing 
apathy prevailed. In Paris there was a passionate 
demand for Alsace-Lorraine; in Berlin the contrary 
was demanded just as eagerly ; in England the destruc- 
tion of Germany was the objective; in Sofia the con- 
quest of the Dobrudja; in Rome they clamored for all 
possible and impossible things; in Vienna nothing at 
all was demanded. In Cracow they called for a Great 
Poland; in Budapest for an unmolested Hungary; in 
Prague for a united Czech state ; and in Innsbruck the 
descendants of Andreas Hofer were fighting as they 
did in his day for their sacred land, Tyrol. In Vienna 
they asked only for peace and quiet. 

Old men and children would fight the arch-enemy in 
Tyrol, but if the Italians were to enter Vienna and 
bring bread with them they would be received with 
shouts of enthusiasm. And yet Berlin and Innsbruck 
were just as hungry as Vienna. C 'est une ville sans dme. 

My visitor compared the Viennese to a pretty, gay, 


and frivolous woman, whose aim in life is pleasure 
and only pleasure. She must dance, sing, and enjoy 
life, and will do so under any circumstances — sans dme. 

This pleasure-loving good-nature of the Viennese 
has its admirable points. For instance, all enemy aliens 
were better treated in Vienna than anywhere else. Not 
the slightest trace of enmity was shown to those who 
were the first to attack and then starve the town. 

Stronger than anything else in Vienna was the desire 
for sensation, pleasure, and a gay life. My friend once 
saw a piece acted at one of the theaters in Vienna called, 
I believe, "Der Junge Medardus." The scene is laid 
during the occupation of Vienna by Napoleon. Viennese 
citizens condemned to death for intriguing with the 
enemy are led away by the French. In a most thrilling 
scene weeping women and children bid them farewell. 
A vast crowd witnesses the affair. A boy suddenly 
rushes in, shouting, ''Napoleon is coming." The 
crowd hurries away to see him, and cries of ''Long live 
Napoleon" are heard in the distance. 

Such was Vienna a hundred years ago, and it is still 
the same. Une ville sans dme. 

I pass on the criticism without comment. 


In different circles which justly and unjustly inter- 
vened in politics during my time of office, the plan was 
suggested of driving a wedge between North and South 
Germany, and converting the latter to the peaceful pol- 
icy of Vienna in contradistinction to Prussian militarism. 

The plan was a faulty one from the very first. To 
begin with, as already stated, the most pronounced 
obstacle to peace was not only the Prussian spirit, but 
the Entente program for our disruption, which a closer 
connection with Bavaria and Saxony would not have 
altered. Secondly, Austria-Hungary, obviously falling 


more and more to pieces, formed no point of attraction 
for Munich and Dresden, who, though not Prussian, 
yet were German to the very backbone. The vague 
and irresponsible plan of returning to the conditions 
of the period before 1866 was an anachronism. Thirdly 
and chiefly, all experiments were dangerous which 
might create the impression in the Entente that the 
Quadruple Alliance was about to be dissolved. In a 
policy of that nature executive ability was of supreme 
importance, and that was exactly what was usually 

The plan was not without good features. The 
appointment of the Bavarian Count Hertling to be 
Imperial Chancellor was not due to Viennese influence, 
though a source of the greatest pleasure to us, and the 
fact of making a choice that satisfied Vienna played a 
great part with the Emperor William. Two Bavarians, 
Hertling and Kiihlmann, had taken over the leader- 
ship of the German Empire, and they, apart from their 
great personal qualities, presented a certain natural 
counter-balance to Prussian hegemony through their 
Bavarian origin ; but only as far as it was still possible 
in general administration which then was in a disturbed 
state. But farther they could not go without causing 

Count Hertling and I were on very good terms. 
This wise and clear-sighted old man, whose only fault 
was that he was too old and physically incapable of 
offering resistance, would have saved Germany, if she 
possibly could have been saved, in 191 7. In the rush- 
ing torrent that whirled her away to her fall, he found 
no pillar to which he could cling. 

Latterly his sight began to fail and give way. He 
suffered from fatigue, and the conferences and councils 
lasting often for hours and hours were beyond hi? 



BY letters patent November 5, 1916, both the Em- 
perors declared Poland's existence as a kingdom. 

When I came into office, I found the situation to be 
that the Poles were annoyed with my predecessor 
because, they declared, Germany had wanted to cede 
the newly created kingdom of Poland to us, and 
Count Burian had rejected the offer. Apparently there 
is some misunderstanding in this version of the case, 
as Burian says it is not correctly rendered. 

There were three reasons that made the handling 
of the Polish question one of the greatest difficulty. 
The first was the totally different views of the case 
held by competent individuals of the Austro-Hungarian 
Monarchy. While the Austrian Ministry was in favor 
of the so-called Austro-PoHsh solution, Count Tisza 
was strongly opposed to it. His standpoint was that 
the political structure of the Monarchy ought not to 
undergo any change through the annexation of Poland, 
and that Poland eventually might be joined to the 
Monarchy as an Austrian province, but never as a 
partner in a tripartite Monarchy. 

A letter that he wrote to me from Budapest on 
February 22, 191 7, was characteristic of his train of 
thought. It was as follows : 


Your Excellency, — Far be it from me to raise a discussion on 
questions which to-day are without actual value and most probably 
will not assume any when peace is signed. On the other hand, I 
wish to avoid the danger that might arise from mistaken con- 
clusions drawn from the fact that I accepted without protest certain 
statements that appeared in the correspondence of our diplomatic 

Guided exclusively by this consideration, I beg to draw the atten- 
tion of your Excellency to the fact that the so-called Austro- Polish 
solution of the PoHsh question has repeatedly (as in telegram No. 63 
from Herr von Ugron) been referred to as the "tripartite solution." 

With reference to this appellation I am compelled to point out 
the fact that in the first period of the war, at a time when the Austro- 
Polish solution was in the foreground, all competent circles in the 
Monarchy were agreed that the annexation of Poland to the Mon- 
archy must on no account affect its dualistic structure. 

This principle was distinctly recognized by the then leaders in 
the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, as also by both Prime Ministers; 
it was also recognized and sanctioned by his late Majesty the 
Emperor and King Francis Joseph. I trust I may assume that this 
view is shared by your Excellency; in any case, and to avoid mis- 
understanding, I must state that the Royal Hungarian government 
considers this to be the ground-pillar of its entire political system, 
from which, under no circtunstances, would it be in a position to 

It would, in our opinion, be fatal for the whole Monarchy. The 
uncertainty of the situation lies in the Austrian state, where the 
German element, after the separation of Galicia, would be in a very 
imsafe position, confronted by powerful tendencies that easily might 
gain the upper hand should a relatively small number of the Ger- 
mans, whether from social-democratic, political-reactionary, or 
doctrinary reasons, separate from the other German parties. The 
establishment of the new Polish element as a third factor with 
Austria-Hungary in our constitutional organism would represent 
an element so unsafe, and would be combined with such risks for the 
further development of the poHcy of the Hapsburg Great Power, 
that, in view of the position of the Monarchy as such, I should feel 
the greatest anxiety lest the new and unreliable Russian-PoHsh 
element, so different from us in many respects, should play too 
predominating a part. 

The firm retention of duajism, according to which half the political 
influence on general subjects rests with Hungary, and the Hungarian 
and German element in common furnish a safe majority in the delega- 


tion, alone can secure for the dynasty and the two states under its 
scepter an adequate guaranty for the future. 

There is no other factor in the Monarchy whose every vital 
interest is so bound up in the dynasty and in the position of the 
Monarchy as a Great Power, as Hungary. The few people whose 
clear perception of that fact may have become dulled during the 
last peaceful decade must have been brought to a keener realization 
of it by the present war. 

The preservation of the Danube Monarchy as a vigorous and 
active Great Power is in the truest sense of the word a vital condi- 
tion for the existence of the Hungarian state. It was fatal for all 
of us that this willing people, endowed with so many administrative 
qualities, ready to sacrifice themselves for all state and national aims, 
have for centuries past not been able to devote themselves to the 
common cause. The striving for a solution of the world racial 
problem and the necessity of combining the responsibilities of a 
Great Power with the independence of the Hungarian state have 
caused heavy trials and century-long friction and fighting. 

Hungary's longing for independence did not take the form of 
efforts for dissolution. The great leaders in our struggle for liberty 
did not attack the continuance of the Hapsburg Empire as a Great 
Power. And even during the bitter trials of the struggle they never 
followed any further aim than to obtain from the Crown a guaranty 
for their chartered rights. 

Hungary, free and independent, wished to remain under the 
scepter of the Hapsburgs; she did not w4sh to come under any 
foreign rule, but to be a free nation governed by her own king and 
her own laws and not subordinate to any other ruler. This prin- 
ciple was repeatedly put forward in solemn form (in the years 1723 
and 1 791), and finally, in the agreement of 1867, a solution was 
found which endowed it with life and insured its being carried 
out in a manner favorable for the position of a great nation. 

In the period of preparation for the agreement of 1867 Hungary 
was a poor and, comparatively speaking, small part of the then 
Monarchy, and the great statesmen of Hungary based their admin- 
istrative plan on dualism and equality as being the only possible way 
for insuring that Hungarian independence, recognized and appealed 
to on many occasions, should materiaHze in a framework of modem 
constitutional practice. 

A political structure for the Monarchy which would make it 
possible for Hungary to be outvoted on the most important questions 
of state affairs, and therefore subject to a foreign will, would again 
have nullified all that had been achieved after so much striving and 


suffering, so much futile waste of strength for the benefit of us all, 
which even in this war, too, would have brought its blessings. All 
those, therefore, who have already stood up firmly and loyally for 
the agreement of 1867 must put their whole strength into resisting 
any tripartite experiments. 

I would very much regret if, in connection with this question, 
differences of opinion should occur among the present responsible 
leaders of the Monarchy. In view of this I considered it unneces- 
sary to give pubHcity to a question that is not pressing. At all 
events, in dealing with the Poles, all expressions must be avoided 
which, in the improbable, although not impossible, event of a 
resumption of the Austro-Polish solution, might awaken expecta- 
tions in them which could only lead to the most complicated 

The most moderate Poles had made up their minds that the 
dualistic structure of the Monarchy would have to remain intact, 
and that the annexation of Poland by way of a junction with the 
Austrian state, with far-reaching autonomy to follow, would have 
to be the consequence. It would therefore be extremely imprudent 
and injurious to awaken fresh aspirations, the realization of which 
seems very doubtful, not only from a Hungarian point of view, but 
from that which concerns the future of the Monarchy. 

I beg your Excellency to accept the expression of my highest 
esteem. TiszA. 

Budapest, February 22, 1917. 

The question as to what was to be Poland's future 
position with regard to the Monarchy remained still 
unsolved. I continued to press the point that Poland 
should be annexed as an independent state. Tisza 
wanted it to be a province. When the Emperor dis- 
missed him, although he was favored by the majority 
of the Parliament, it did not alter the situation in 
regard to the Polish question, as Wekerle, in this as in 
almost all other questions, had to adopt Tisza's views; 
otherwise he would not have been in the minority. 

The actual reason of Tisza's dismissal was not the 
question of electoral reforms, as his successors could only 
act according to Tisza's instructions. For, as leader 
of the majority, which he continued to be even after 


his dismissal, no electoral reforms could be carried 
out in opposition to his will. Tisza thought that the 
Emperor meditated putting in a coalition majority 
against him, which he considered quite logical, though 
not agreeable. 

The next difficulty was the attitude of the Germans 
toward Poland. At the occupation of Poland we were 
already unfairly treated, and the Germans had appro- 
priated the greater part of the country. Always and 
ever3rwhere they were the stronger on the battle-field, 
and the consequence was that they claimed the lion's 
share of all the successes gained. This was in reality 
quite natural, but it greatly added to all diplomatic 
and political activities, which were invariably prejudiced 
and hindered by military facts. When I entered upon 
office Germany's standpoint was that she had a far 
superior right to Poland, and that the simplest solution 
would be for us to evacuate the territory we had 
occupied. It was, of course, obvious that I could not 
accept such a proposal, and we held firmly to the point 
that under no circumstances would our troops leave 
Lublin. After much controversy the Germans agreed, 
tant hien que mat, to this solution. The further develop- 
ment of the affair showed that the German standpoint 
went through many changes. In general, it fluctuated 
between two extremes: either Poland must unite her- 
self to Germany — the German-Polish solution — or else 
vast portions of her territory must be ceded to Germany 
to be called frontier adjustments, and what remained 
would be either for us or for Poland herself. Neither 
solution could be accepted by us. The first one for this 
reason, that the Polish question being in the foreground 
made our Galician question very acute, as it would 
have been out of the question to retain Galicia in the 
Monarchy when separated from the rest of Poland. 
We were obliged to oppose the German-Polish solution, 


not from any desire for conquest, but to prevent the 
sacrifice of Galicia for no purpose. 

The second German suggestion was just as impos- 
sible to carry out, because Poland, crippled beyond 
recognition by the frontier readjustment, even though 
united with Galicia, would have been so unsatisfactory 
a factor that there would never have been any prospect 
of harmonious dealings with her. 

The third difficulty w-as presented by the Poles them- 
selves, as they naturally wished to secure the greatest 
possible profit out of their release by the Central 
Powers, even though it did not contribute much to 
their future happiness so far as military support was 
concerned. There were many different parties among 
them: first of all, one for the Entente; a second, Bilin- 
sky's party; above all, one for the Central Powers, 
especially when we gained military successes. 

On the whole, Polish policy was to show their hand 
as little as possible to any particular group, and in 
the end range themselves on the side of the con- 
querors. It must be admitted that these tactics were 

In addition to these difficulties, there prevailed almost 
always in Polish political circles a certain nervous 
excitement, which made it extremely difficult to enter 
into any calm and essential negotiations. At the very 
beginning, misunderstandings occurred between the 
Polish leaders and myself with regard to what I pro- 
posed to do; misunderstandings which, toward the 
end of my term of office, developed into the most bitter 
enmity toward me on the part of the Poles. On 
February 10, 191 7, a whole year before Brest-Litovsk, 
I received the news from Warsaw that Herr von 
Bilinsky, apparently misunderstanding my standpoint, 
evolved from the facts, considered that hopes repre- 
sented promises, and in so doing raised Polish expecta- 


tions to an unwarranted degree. I telegraphed, there- 
upon, to our representative as follows : 

February i6, igiy. 

I have informed Herr von Bilinsky, as well as different other 
Poles, that it is impossible, in the present imsettled European situa- 
tion, to make, on the whole, any plans for the future of Poland. I 
have told them that I sympathize with the Austro-Polish solution 
longed for by all Poles, but that I am not in the position to say 
whether this position will be attainable, though I am equally unable 
to foretell the opposite. Finally, I have also declared that our whole 
policy where Poland is concerned can only consist in our leaving a 
door open for all future transactions. 

I added that our representative must quote my 
direct orders in settling the matter. 

In January, 191 7, a conference was held respecting 
the Polish question ; a conference which aimed at laying 
down a broad line of action for the policy to be adopted. 
I first of all referred to the circumstances connected 
with the previously mentioned German request for us 
to evacuate Lublin, and explained my reasons for not 
agreeing to the demand. I pointed out that it did 
not seem probable to me that the war would end with a 
dictated peace on our side, and that, with reference to 
Poland, we should not be able to solve the Polish 
question without the co-operation of the Entente, and 
that there was not much object as long as the war lasted 
in endeavoring to secure fails accomplis. The main 
point was that we remain in the country, and on the 
conclusion of peace enter into negotiations with the 
Entente and the Central Powers to secure a solution 
of the Austro-Polish question. That should be the 
gist of our policy. Count Tisza spoke after me and 
agreed with me that we must not yield to the German 
demand for our evacuation of Lublin. As regards 
the future, the Hungarian Prime Minister stated that 
he had always held the view that we should cede to 


Germany our claim to Poland m exchange for economic 
and financial compensation; but that, at the present 
time, he did not feel so confident about it. The con- 
ditions then prevailing were unbearable, chiefly owing 
to the variableness of German policy, and he. Count 
Tisza, returned to his former, oft-repeated opinion that 
we should strive as soon as possible to withdraw with 
honor out of the affair; no conditions that would lead 
to further friction, but the surrendering to Germany 
of our share in Poland in exchange for economic com- 

The Austrian Prime Minister, Count Clam, opposed 
this from the Austrian point of view, which supported 
the union of all the Poles under the Hapsburg scepter 
as being the one and only desirable solution. 

The feeling during the debate was that the door must 
be closed against the Austro-Polish proposals, and that, 
in view of the impossibility of an immediate definite 
solution, we must adhere firmly to the policy that ren- 
dered possible the union of all the Poles under the Haps- 
burg rule. 

After Germany's refusal of the proposal to accept 
Galicia as compensation for Alsace-Lorraine, this pro- 
gram was adhered to through various phases and vicis- 
situdes until the ever-increasing German desire for 
frontier readjustment created a situation which made 
the achievement of the Austro-Polish project very 
doubtful. Unless we could secure a Poland which, 
thanks to the unanimity of the great majority of all 
Poles, would willingly and cheerfully join the Mon- 
archy, the Austro-Polish solution would not have been 
a happy one, as in that case we should only have 
increased the number of discontented elements in the 
Monarchy, already very high, by adding fresh ones 
to them. As it proved impossible to break the resist- 
ance put up by General Ludendorff, the idea pre- 

16 ~ 


sented itself at a later stage to strive for the annexation 
of Rumania instead of Poland. It was a return to the 
original idea of the Archduke Franz Ferdinand, the 
union of Rumania with Transylvania, closely linked 
to the Monarchy. In that case we should have lost 
Galicia to Poland, but a certain compensation would 
have been conceded to us in Rumania with her corn 
and oil springs, and for the Monarchy, as for the Poles, 
it appeared better to unite the latter collectively with 
Germany rather than to divide them, as suggested in 
the Vienna-Berlin dispute. 

The plan for the annexation of Rumania presented 
well-nigh insurmountable internal difficulties. Owing 
to her geographical position, Rumania ought naturally 
to be annexed to Hungary. Tisza, who was not in 
favor of the plan, would, nevertheless, have agreed to 
it if the annexed country had been administered from 
Budapest and in the Magyar spirit, which meant that 
it would be incorporated in Hungary. This, for 
obvious reasons, would involve the failure of the plan, 
for the Rumanians would gain no advantage from the 
annexation if it was to be at the sacrifice of their 
national independence. On the other hand, the 
Austrian Ministry raised quite justifiable objections 
to the suggestion of a future combination that would 
add a rich and vast country to Hungary, while Austria 
would be reduced in proportion, and compensation 
in one or other form was demanded. Another, but 
transitory, plan was to make over Bosnia and the Herze- 
govina definitely by way of compensation to Austria. 
All these ideas and plans, however, were of a transitory 
nature, evoked by the constantly recurring difficulties 
in Berlin and Warsaw, and they invariably fell through 
when it was seen that the obstacles arising from dualism 
were not to be overcome. The original Austro-Polish 
solution was taken up again, although it was impossible 


to extort from the Germans a definite statement as to 
a reasonable western frontier for Poland. In the very 
last term of my office the Rumanian plan again came 
up, partly owing to the bitter feelings of the Poles 
on the Cholm question, and partly owing to the claims 
made by Germany, which rendered the Austro-Polish 
solution impossible. 

Simultaneously with these efforts, a plan for the 
future organization of the Monarchy was being con- 
sidered. The Emperor adhered to the correct stand- 
point, as I still consider it to be, that the structure 
of the Monarchy, after an endurable issue from the v/ar, 
would have to be altered, and reconstruction on a far 
more pronounced national basis be necessary. As 
appHed to the Poles, this project would entail the 
dividing of East and West Galicia, and an independent 
position for the Ruthenian Poles. 

When at Brest-Litovsk, under the pressure of the 
hunger riots that were beginning, I refused to agree to 
the Ukrainian demands, but consented to submit 
the question of the division of Galicia to the Austrian 
Crown Council. I was impelled thereto by the con- 
viction that we were adhering strictly to the program 
as it had been planned for the Monarchy. 

I will give fuller details respecting this question in 
the next chapter, but will merely relate the following 
incident as an example to show the degree of hostile 
persecution to which I was exposed. The rumor was 
spread on all sides that the Emperor had told the Poles 
that ''I had concluded peace with the Ukraine without 
his knowledge and against his will." It is quite out 
of the question that the Emperor can have made such 
a statement, as the peace conditions at Kieff were a 
result of a council convoked ad hoc, where — as the 
protocol proves — the Emperor and Doctor von Seidler 
,were responsible for the terms. 


The great indignation of the Poles at my conduct at 
Brest-Litovsk was quite unfounded. I never promised 
the Poles that they were to have the Cholm district, 
and never alluded to any definite frontiers. Had I 
done so the capable political leaders in Poland would 
never have listened to me, as they knew very well that 
the frontiers, only in a very slight degree, depended 
on the decisions at Vienna. If we lost the war we 
had nothing more to say in the matter; if a peace of 
agreement was concluded, then Berlin would be the 
strongest side, having occupied the largest portion of 
the country; the question would then have to be 
decided at the general Conference. 

I always told the Polish leaders that I hoped to 
secure a Poland thoroughly satisfied, also with respect 
to her frontier claims, and there were times when we 
seemed to be very near the accomplishment of such 
an aim; but I never concealed the fact that there were 
many influences at work restricting my wishes and 
keeping them very much subdued. 

The partition of Galicia was an internal Austrian 
question. Doctor von Seidler took up the matter 
most warmly, and at the Council expressed the hope 
of being able to carry out these measures by parlia- 
mentary procedure and against the opposition of the 

I will allude to this question also in my next chapter. 

Closely connected with the Polish question was the 
so-called Central European project. 

For obvious and very comprehensible reasons Ger- 
many was keenly interested in a scheme for closer union. 
I was always full of the idea of turning these important 
concessions to account at the right moment as com- 
pensation for prospective German sacrifices, and thus 
promoting a peace of understanding. 

During the first period of my official activity, I 


still hoped to secure a revision of the Treaty of 

I hoped, as already mentioned, that the Entente 
would not keep to the resolution adopted for the 
mutilation of the Monarchy, and I did not, therefore, 
approach the Central European question closer; had 
I raised it, it would greatly have comphcated our posi- 
tion with regard to Paris and London. When I was 
compelled later to admit that the Entente kept firmly 
to the decision that we were to be divided in any case, 
and that any change in its purpose would only be 
effected, if at all, by miHtary force, I endeavored to 
work out the Central European plan in detail, and to 
reserve the concessions ready to be made to Germany 
until the right moment had arrived to make the offer. 

In this connection it seemed to me that the Customs 
Union was unfeasible, at any rate at first; but on the 
other hand, a new and closer commercial treaty would 
be desirable, and a closer union of the armies would 
offer no danger; it was hoped greatly to reduce them 
after the war. I was convinced that a peace of under- 
standing would bring about disarmament, and that 
the importance of miHtary settlements would be in- 
fluenced thereby. Also, that the conclusion of peace 
would bring with it different relations between all 
states, and that, therefore, the political and miHtary 
decisions to be determined in the settlement with Ger- 
many were not of such importance as those relating 
to economic questions. 

The drawing up of this program was met, however, by 
the most violent opposition on the part of the Emperor. 
He was particularly opposed to all miHtary rap- 

When the attempt to approach the question failed 
through the resistance from the crown, I arranged 
on my own initiative for a debate on the economic 


question. The Emperor then wrote me a letter in 
which he forbade any further deaHngs in the matter. 
I answered his letter by a business report, pointing 
out the necessity of continuing the negotiations. 

The question then became a sore point between the 
Emperor and myself. He did not give his permission 
for further negotiations, but I continued them notwith- 
standing. The Emperor knew of it, but did not make 
further allusion to the matter. The vast claims put 
forward by the Germans made the negotiations ex- 
tremely difficult, and with long intervals and at a very 
slow pace they dragged on until I left office. 

Afterward the Emperor went with Burian to the 
German headquarters. Following that, the Salzburg 
negotiations were proceeded with and, apparently, at 
greater speed. 



IN the summer of 191 7 we received information which 
seemed to suggest a likelihood of reahzing the con- 
templated peace with Russia. A report dated June 
13, 191 7, which came to me from a neutral country, ran 
as follows: 

The Russian press, bourgeois and socialistic, reveals the following 
state of affairs : 

At the front and at home bitter differences of opinion are rife 
as to the offensive against the Central Powers demanded by the 
Allies and now also energetically advocated by Kerensky in speeches 
throughout the country. The Bolsheviks, as also the Socialists 
under the leadership of Lenin, with their press, are taking a definite 
stand against any such offensive. But a great part of the Menshe- 
viks as well — i.e., Tscheide's party, to which the present Ministers 
Tseretelli and Skobeleff belong— is likewise opposed to the offensive, 
and the lack of unanimity on this question is threatening the unity 
of the party, which has only been maintained with difficulty up to 
now. A section of the Mensheviks, styled Internationalists from 
their trying to re-establish the old Internationale, also called Zim- 
merwalder or Kienthaler, and led by Trotzky, or, more properly, 
Bronstein, who has returned from America, with Larin, Martow, 
Martynoz, etc., returned from Switzerland, are on this point, as 
with regard to the entry of Menshevik Social Democrats into the 
Provisional government, decidedly opposed to the majority of the 
party. And for this reason Leo Deutsch, one of the founders of 
the Marxian Social Democracy, has publicly withdrawn from the 
party, as being too little patriotic for his views and not insisting 
on final victory. He is, with Georgei Plechanow, one of the chief 


supporters of the Russian "Social Patriots," which group is termed, 
after their press organ, the Echinstvo group, but is of no importance 
either as regards numbers or influence. Thus it comes about that 
the official organ of the Mensheviks, the Rahocaja Gazeta, is forced 
to take up an intermediate position, and publishes, for instance, 
frequent articles against the offensive. 

There is then the Social Revolutionary party, represented in the 
Cabinet by the Minister of Agriculture, Tschernow. This is per- 
haps the strongest of all the Russian parties, having succeeded 
in leading the whole of the peasant movement into its course; at the 
Pan-Russian Congress the great majority of the peasants' deputies 
were Social Revolutionaries, and no Social Democrat was elected to 
the executive committee of the Peasants' Deputies' Council. A 
section of this party, and, it would seem, the greater and more influ- 
ential portion, is definitely opposed to any offensive. This is plainly 
stated in the leading organs of the party, Delo Naroda and Zemlja i 
Wolja. Only a small and apparently uninfluential portion, grouped 
round the organ Volja Naroda, faces the bourgeois press with uncon- 
ditional demands for an offensive to relieve the Allies, as does the 
Plechanow group. Kerensky's party, the Trudoviks, as also the 
related People's Socialists, represented in the Cabinet by the Minis- 
ter of Food, Peschechonow, are still undecided whether to follow 
Kerensky here or not. Verbal information, and utterances in the 
Russian press, as, for instance, the Retsch, assert that Kerensky's 
health gives grounds for fearing a fatal catastrophe in a short time. 
The official organ of the Workers' and Soldiers' Deputies' Council, 
the hwestija, on the other hand, frequently asserts with great 
emphasis that an offensive must unquestionably be made. It is 
characteristic that a speech made by the IMinister of Agriculture, 
Tschernow, to the Peasants' Congress, was interpreted as meaning 
that he was opposed to the offensive, so that he was obliged to 
justify himself to his colleagues in the Ministry and deny that such 
had been his meaning. 

While, then, people at home are seriously divided on the question 
of an offensive, the men at the front appear but Uttle inclined^ to 
undertake any offensive. This is stated by all parties in the Russian 
press, the symptoms being regarded either with satisfaction or with 
regret. The infantry in particular are against the offensive; the 
only enthusiasm is to be found among the officers, in the cavabry or 
a part of it, and the artillery. It is characteristic also that the 
Cossacks are in favor of war. These, at any rate, have an ulterior 
motive, in that they hope by success at the front to be able ulti- 
mately to overthrow the revolutionary regime. For there is this to 


be borne in mind: that while most of the Russian peasants have no 
landed property exceeding five deshatin, and three millions have no 
land at all, every Cossack owns forty deshatin, an unfair distinction 
which is constantly being referred to in all discussions of the land 
question. This is a sufficient ground for the isolated position of the 
Cossacks in the Revolution, and it was for this reason also that 
they were formerly always among the most loyal supporters of 

the Tsar. 

Extremely characteristic of the feeling at the front are the follow- 
ing details: 

At the sitting on May 30th of the Pan-Russian Congress, Officers' 
Delegates, a representative of the officers of the 3d Elizabethengrad 
Hussars is stated, according to the Retsch of May ist, to have given, 
in a speech for the offensive, the following characteristic statement: 
"You all know to what extremes the disorder at the front has 
reached. The infantry cut the wires connecting them with their 
batteries and declare that the soldiers will not remain more than one 
month at the front, but will go home." 

It is very instructive also to read the report of a delegate from 
the front, who had accompanied the French and English majority 
Socialists at the front. This report was printed in the Rabocaja 
Gazeta, May i8th and 19th— this is the organ of the Mensheviks 
—i.e., that of Tscheide, Tseretelli, and Skobeleff . These Entente 
Socialists at the front were told with all possible distinctness that 
the Russian army could not and would not fight for the imperiahstic 
aims of England and France. The state of the transport, provisions 
and forage supplies, as also the danger to the achievements of the 
Revolution by further war, demanded a speedy cessation of hos- 
tilities. The EngHsh and French SociaHst delegates were said 
to be not altogether pleased at this state of feeling at the front. 
And it was further demanded of them that they should undertake 
to make known the result of their experience in Russia on the 
western front — i.e., in France. There was some very plain speaking, 
too, with regard to America: representatives from the Russian front 
spoke openly of America's poHcy of exploitation toward Europe 
and the Allies. It was urged then that an international Socialist 
conference should be convened at the earliest possible moment, 
and supported by the English and French majority SociaHsts. At 
one of the meetings at the front, the French and English Socialists 
were given the following reply: 

"Tell your comrades that we await definite declarations from 
your governments and peoples renouncing conquest and indemnities. 
We will shed no drop of blood for imperiahsts, whether they be 


Russians, Germans, or English. We await the speediest agreement 
between the workers of all countries for the termination of the war, 
which is a thing shameful in itself, and will, if continued, prove 
disastrous to the Russian Revolution. We will not conclude any 
separate peace, but tell your people to let us know their aims as 
soon as possible." 

According to the report, the French Socialists were altogether 
converted to this point of view. This also appears to be the case, 
from the statements with regard to the attitude of Cachin and 
Moutet at the French Socialist Congress, The English, on the other 
hand, were immovable, with the exception of Sanders, who inclined 
somewhat toward the Russian point of view. 

Private information reaching the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in 
this country states that shots were fired at M. Thomas, the Minister 
of Munitions, in the course of one of his war speeches at the Russian 

The disorganization at the front is described by an officer or 
soldier at the front in the same organ, the Rahocaja Gazeta, for 
May 26th, as follows: 

"The passionate desire for peace, peace of whatever kind, aye, 
even a peace costing the loss of ten governments {i.e., districts), is 
growing ever more plainly evident. Men dream of it passionately, 
even though it is not yet spoken of at meetings and in revolutions, 
even though all conscious elements of the army fight against this 
party that longs for peace." And to paralyze this, there can be but 
one way: let the soldiers see the democracy fighting emphatically 
for peace and the end of the war. 

The Pan-Russian Congress of Workers' and Soldiers' Delegates' 
Councils and the Army Organization at the front in St. Petersburg 
June ist to 14th took for its first point in the order of the day the fol- 
lowing: "The war, questions of defense and the struggle for peace." 
At this time the government v/ould doubtless have to give a declara- 
tion with regard to the answer already received at the beginning 
of June from the Allies as to their war aims. This congress will also 
probably decide definitely upon the nomination for the Stockholm 
Conference and appoint delegates. Point 4 deals with the ques- 
tion of nationality. An open conflict had broken out between 
the Petersburg Workers' and Soldiers' Deputy Councils and the 
Ukrainian Soldiers' Congress, sitting at Kieff, on account of the 
formation of a Ukrainian army. The appointment of a "Ukrai- 
nian Army General Committee" further aggravated the conflict. 

With regard to the increasing internal confusion, the growing 
seriousness of the nationality dispute, the further troubles in con- 


nection with agricultural and industrial questions, a detailed report 
dealing separately with these heads will be forwarded later. 

At the end of November I wrote to one of my friends 
the following letter, which I here give in extenso, as it 
shovv^s faithfully my estimate of the situation at the 


Vienna, November 77, igi/- 

My dear Friend, — After many days, full of trouble, annoyance, 
and toil, I write to you once more in order to answer your very 
noteworthy observations; to be in contact with you again turns my 
thoughts into other channels, and enables me, for the time at least, 
to forget the wretchedness of every day. 

You have heard, you say, that matters are not going so well • 
between the Emperor and myself, and you are sorry for this. ^ I am 
sorry myself, if for no other reason than that it increases the friction 
of the daily working machine to an insupportable degree. As soon 
as a thing of this sort leaks out— and it does so fast enough— all 
enemies, male and female, rush in with renewed strength, making 
for the vulnerable point, in the hope of securing my overthrow. 
These good people are like carrion vultures — I myself am the carrion 
—they can scent from afar that there is something for them to do, 
and come flying to the spot. And the lies they invent and the 
intrigues they contrive, with a view to increasing existing differences 
— really, they are worthy of admiration. You ask, who are these 
inveterate enemies of mine? 

Well, first of a 1, those whom you yourself conjecture. 

And, secondly, the enemies whom every Minister has, the nimibers 
of those who would fane be in his place. Finally, a crowd of political 
mountebanks from the Jockey Club, who are disgusted because they 
had hoped for some personal advantage through my influence, and 
I have ignored them. No. i is a comfortingly negligible quantity. 
No. 2 are dangerous, but No. 3 are deadly. 

In any case, then, my days are numbered. Heaven be thanked, 
reHef is not far off. If only I could now settle things with Russia 
quickly, and thus perhaps secure the possibility of a peace all round. 
All reports from Russia seem to point to the fact that the govern- 
ment there is determined on peace, and peace as speedily as possible. 
But the Germans are now full of confidence. If they can throw 
their massed forces against the west, they have no doubt of being 
able to break through, take Paris and Calais, and directly threaten 
England. Such a success, however, could only lead to peace if 


Germany could be persuaded to renounce all plans of conquest. I, 
at any rate, cannot believe that the Entente, after losing Paris and 
Calais, would refuse to treat for peace as inter pares — it would at 
least be necessary to make every endeavor in that direction. Up 
to now Hindenburg has done all that he promised, so much we 
must admit, and the whole of Germany believes in his forthcoming 
success in the west — always taking for granted, of course, the 
freeing of the eastern front; that is to say, peace with Russia. 
The Russian peace, then, may prove the first step on the way to the 
peace of the world. 

I have during the last few days received reliable information 
about the Bolsheviks. Their leaders are almost all of them Jews, 
with altogether fantastic ideas, and I do not envy the country that 
is governed by them. From our point of view, however, the most 
interesting thing about them is that they are anxious to make peace, 
and in this respect they do not seem likely to change, for they 
cannot carry on the war. 

In the Ministry here, three groups are represented: one declines 
to take Lenin seriously, regarding him as an ephemeral personage; 
the second does not take this view at all, but is, nevertheless, un- 
willing to treat with a revolutionary of this sort; and the third 
consists, as far as I am aware, of myself alone, and I will treat with 
him, despite the possibly ephemeral character of his position and the 
certainty of revolution. The briefer Lenin's period of power the 
more need to act speedily, for no subsequent Russian government 
will recommence the war — and I cannot take a Russian Mettenich 
as my partner when there is none to be had. 

The Germans are hesitating — they do not altogether like the idea 
of having any dealings with Lenin, possibly also from the reasons 
already mentioned; they are inconsistent in this, as is often the case. 
The German military party — ^which, as every one knows, holds the 
reins of policy in Germany entirely — have, as far as I can see, done 
all they could to overthrow Kerensky and set up ''something else" 
in his place. Now, the something else is there and is ready to make 
peace; obviously, then, one must act, even though the party con- 
cerned is not such as one would have chosen for oneself. 

It is impossible to get any exact information about these Bolshe- 
viks; that is to say, there is plenty of information available, but 
it is contradictory. The way they begin is this : everything in the 
least reminiscent of work, wealth, and culture must be destroyed, 
and the bourgeoisie exterminated. Freedom and equality seem no 
longer to have any place on their program; only a bestial sup- 
pression of all but the proletariat itself. The Russian bourgeois 


class, too, seems almost as stupid and cowardly as our own, and 
its members let themselves be slaughtered like sheep. 

True, this Russian Bolshevism is a peril to Europe, and if we 
had the power, besides securing a tolerable peace for ourselves, to 
force other countries into a state of law and order, then it would be 
better to have nothing to do with such people as these, but to march 
on Petersburg and arrange matters there. But we have not the 
power; peace at the earliest possible moment is necessary for our 
ov;n salvation, and we cannot obtain peace unless the Germans 
get to Paris— and they cannot get to Paris unless their eastern 
front is freed. That is the circle complete. All this the German 
military leaders themselves maintain, and it is altogether illogical of 
them now apparently to object to Lenin on personal grounds. 

I was unable to finish this letter yesterday, and now add this 
to-day. Yesterday another attempt was made, from a quarter 
which you will guess, to point out to me the advantage of a separate 
peace. I spoke to the Emperor about it and told him that this 
would simply be shooting oneself for fear of death; that I could 
not take such a step myself, but would be wilHng to resign under 
some pretext or other, when he would certainly find men ready to 
make the attempt. The Conference of London has determined on a 
division of the Monarchy, and no separate peace on our part would 
avail to alter that. The Rumanians, Serbians, and Italians are to 
receive enormous compensations; we are to lose Trieste, and the 
remainder is to be broken up into separate states — Czechish, Polish, 
Hungarian, and German. There will be very slight contact between 
these new states; in other words, a separate peace would mean 
that the Monarchy, having first been mutilated, would then be 
hacked to pieces. But until we arrive at this result we must 
fight on, and that, moreover, against Germany, which will, of course, 
make peace with Russia at once and occupy the Monarchy. The 
German generals will not be so foolish as to wait until the Entente 
has invaded Germany through Austria, but will take care to make 
Austria itself the theater of war. So that instead of bringing the 
war to an end, we should be merely changing one opponent for 
another and delivering up provinces hitherto spared — such as 
Bohemia and Tyrol— to the fury of battle, only to be wrecked com- 
pletely in the end. 

On the other hand, we might perhaps, in a few months' time, 
secure peace all round, with Germany as well — a tolerable peace of 
mutual understanding— always provided the German offensive turiis 
out successful. The Emperor was more silent then. Among his 
entourage, one pulls this way, another that— and we gain nothing 


in that manner among the Entente, while we are constantly losing 
the confidence of Berlin. If a man wishes to go over to the enemy, 
then let him do it — le remede sera pire que le mal — but to be forever 
dallying with the idea of treachery and adopting the pose without 
carrying it out in reality — this I cannot regard as prudent policy. 

I believe we could arrive at a tolerable peace of understanding; 
we should lose something to Italy, and should, of course, gain 
nothing in exchange. Furthermore, we should have to alter the 
entire structure of the Monarchy — after the fashion of the federation 
Danubienne proposed to France — and I am certainly rather at a loss 
to see how this can be done in face of the Germans and Hungarians. 
But I hope we may survive the war, and I hope also that they will 
ultimately revise the conditions of the London Conference. Let 
but old Hindenburg once make his entry into Paris, and then the 
Entente must utter the decisive word that it is willing to treat. 
But when that moment comes, I am firmly determined to do the 
utmost possible to appeal publicly to the peoples of the Central 
Powers and ask them if they prefer to fight on for conquest or if 
they will have peace. 

To settle with Russia as speedily as possible, then break through 
the determination of the Entente to exterminate us, and then to 
make peace — even at a loss — that is my plan and the hope for which 
I live. Naturally, after the capture of Paris, all ''leading" men 
— with the exception of the Emperor Karl — will demand a "good" 
peace, and that we shall never get in any case. The odium of having 
"spoiled the peace" I will take upon myself. 

So, I hope, we may come out of it at last, albeit rather mauled. 
But the old days will never return. A new order will be born in 
throes and convulsions. I said so pubHcly some time back, in my 
Budapest speech, and it was received with disapproval practically 
on all sides. 

This has made a long letter, after all, and it is late. Lebe wohl, 
and let me hear from you again soon. — In friendship as of old, yours, 

[signed] Czernin. 

With regard to the peace negotiations in Brest- 
Litovsk, I will leave my diary to speak for itself. 
Despite many erroneous views that may appear in the 
following notes and various unimportant details, I 
have not abbrev^iated it at all, since it gives, in its 
present form, what I believe will be a clear picture of 
the development. 


**December iq, IQI7- — Departure from Vienna, 
Wednesday 19th. 

''Four o'clock, Nordbahnhof. Found the party 
already assembled there : Gratz and Wiesner, Colloredo, 
Gautsch and Andrian, also Lieut. Field-Marshal 
Csicserics, and Major Fleck, Baden. 

''I took the opportunity on the journey to give 
Csicserics an idea of my intentions and the tactics to 
be pursued. I told him that in my opinion Russia 
would propose a general peace, and that we must of 
course accept this proposal. I hoped that the first 
steps for a general peace would be taken at Brest, 
and not given up for a long time. Should the Entente 
not accept, then at least the way would be open for a 
separate peace. After that I had long discussions with 
Gratz and Wiesner, which took up more or less the 
whole day. 

^'December 20, iQi'/. — ^Arrived at Brest a few minutes 
past five. At the station were the Chief of Staff, Gen- 
eral Hoffmann, with some ten of his suite, also the 
emissary Roseberg and Merey with my party. I 
greeted them on the platform, and after a few words 
Merey went into the train with me to tell me what 
had happened during the past few days. On the whole, 
Merey takes a not unfavorable view of the situation 
and believes that, unless something unforeseen crops 
up, we should succeed within a reasonable time in 
arranging matters satisfactorily. 

''At six o'clock I went to pay my visit to General 
Hoffmann; he gave me some interesting details as to 
the mentality of the Russian delegates, and the nature 
of the armistice he had so fortunately concluded. I 
had the impression that the general combined expert 
knowledge and energy with a good deal of calm and 
ability, but also not a little Prussian brutality, whereby 
he had succeeded in persuading the Russians, despite 


opposition at first, to agree to very favorable terms of 
truce. A little later, as arranged, Prince Leopold of 
Bavaria came in, and I had a little talk with him on 
matters of no importance. 

*'We then went to dinner, all together, including the 
whole staff of nearly one hundred persons. The dinner 
presented one of the most remarkable pictures ever 
seen. The Prince of Bavaria presided. Next to the 
Prince sat the leader of the Russian delegation, a Jew 
called Joffe, recently liberated from Siberia; then came 
the generals and the other delegates. Apart from 
this Joffe, the most striking personality in the delega- 
tion is the brother-in-law of the Russian Foreign 
Minister, Trotzky, a man named Kamenew, who, 
likewise liberated from prison during the Revolution, 
now plays a prominent part. The third delegate is 
Madame Bizenko, a woman with a comprehensive past. 
Her husband is a minor official; she herself took an 
early part in the revolutionary movement. Twelve 
years ago she murdered General Sacharow, the governor 
of some Russian city, who had been condemned to 
death by the Socialists for his energy. She appeared 
before the general with a petition, holding a revolver 
imder her petticoat. When the general began to 
read she fired four bullets into his body, killing him 
on the spot. She was sent to Siberia, where she lived 
for twelve years, at first in solitary confinement, after- 
ward under somewhat easier conditions; she also owes 
her freedom to the Revolution. This remarkable 
woman learned French and German in Siberia well 
enough to read them, though she cannot speak them, 
not knowing how the words should be pronounced. 
She is the type of the educated Russian proletariat. 
Extremely quiet and reserved, with a curious deter- 
mined set of the mouth, and eyes that flare up pas- 
sionately at times. All that is taking place around 


her here she seems to regard with indifference. Only 
when mention is made of the great principle of the 
International Revolution does she suddenly awake, 
her whole expression alters; she reminds one of a 
beast of prey seeing its victim at hand and preparing 
to fall upon it and rend it. 

"After dinner I had my first long conversation with 
Hr. Joffe. His whole theory is based on the idea of 
establishing the right of self-determination of peoples 
on the broadest basis throughout the world, and trusting 
to the peoples thus freed to continue in mutual love. 
Joffe does not deny that the process would involve 
civil war throughout the world, to begin with, but 
he believes that such a war, as realizing the ideals of 
humanity, would be justified, and its end worth all it 
would cost. I contented myself with telling him that 
he must let Russia give proof that Bolshevism was 
the way to a happier age; when he had shown this to 
be so, the rest of the world would be won over to his 
ideals. But until his theory had been proved by 
example he would hardly succeed in convincing people 
generally to adopt his views. We were ready to 
conclude a general peace without indemnities or annexa- 
tions, and were thoroughly agreed to leave the develop- 
ment of affairs in Russia thereafter to the judgment 
of the Russian government itself. We should also be 
willing to learn something from Russia, and if his 
revolution succeeded he would force Europe to follow 
him, whether we would or not. But meanwhile there 
was a great deal of skepticism about, and I pointed 
out to him that we should not ourselves undertake 
any imitation of the Russian methods, and did not wish 
for any interference with our own internal affairs ; this 
we must strictly forbid. If he persisted in endeavoring 
to carry out this Utopian plan of grafting his ideas on 
ourselves, he had better go back home by the next 



train, for there could be no question of making peace. 
Hr. Joffe looked at me in astonishment with his soft 
eyes, was silent for a while, and then, in a kindly, almost 
imploring tone that I shall never forget, he said : ' Still, 
I hope we may yet be able to raise the revolution in 
your country too.' 

"We shall hardly need any assistance from the good 
Joffe, I fancy, in bringing about a revolution among 
ourselves; the people will manage that, if the Entente 
persist in refusing to come to terms. 

' ' They are strange creatures, these Bolsheviks. They 
talk of freedom and the reconciliation of the peoples 
of the world, of peace and unity, and withal they are 
said to be the most cruel tyrants history has ever 
known. They are simply exterminating the bour- 
geoisie, and their arguments are machine-guns and the 
gallows. My talk to-day with Joffe has shown me 
that these people are not honest, and in falsity surpass 
all that cunning diplomacy has been accused of, for to 
oppress decent citizens in this fashion and then talk 
at the same time of the universal blessing of freedom — 
it is sheer lying. 

''December 21, 1917. — I went with all my party to 
lunch at noon with the Prince of Bavaria. He lives in 
a Httle bit of a palace half an hour by car from Brest. 
He seems to be much occupied with miUtary matters 
and is very busy. 

"I spent the first night in the train, and while we 
were at breakfast our people moved in with the luggage 
to our residence. We are in a small house, where I 
Hve with all the Austro-Hungarian party, quite close 
to the officers' casino, and there is every comfort that 
could be wished for here. I spent the afternoon at 
work with my people, and in the evening there was a 
meeting of the delegates of the three Powers. This 
evening I had the first talk with Kiihlmann alone, and 


at once declared positively that the Russians would 
propose a general peace, and that we must accept it. 
Kuhlmann is half disposed to take my view himself; 
the formula, of course, will be 'no party to demand 
annexations or indemnities ' ; then, if the Entente agree, 
we shall have an end of all this suffering. But, alas! 
it is hardly likely that they will. 

''December 22, 1917. — The forenoon was devoted to 
the first discussion among the allies, the principles just 
referred to as discussed with Kuhlmann being then 
academically laid down. In the afternoon the first 
plenary sitting took place, the proceedings being opened 
by the Prince of Bavaria and then led by Doctor Kiihl- 
mann. It was decided that the Powers should take 
it in turns to preside, in order of the Latin alphabet as 
to their names — i.e., Allemagne, Autriche, etc. Doctor 
Kuhlmann requested Hr. Joffe to tell us the principles 
on which he considered a future peace should be based, 
and the Russian delegate then went through the six 
main tenets already familiar from the newspapers. 
The proposal was noted, and we undertook to give 
a reply as early as possible after having discussed 
the matter among ourselves. These, then, were the 
proceedings of the first brief sitting of the peace 

'' December 2j, 1917. — Kuhlmann and I prepared our 
answer early. It will be generally known from the 
newspaper reports. It cost us much heavy work to 
get it done. Kuhlmann is personally an advocate of 
general peace, but fears the influence of the mihtary 
party, who do not wish to make peace until definitely 
victorious. But at last it is done. Then there were 
further difficulties with the Turks. They declared that 
they must insist on one thing, to wit, that the Russian 
troops should be withdrawn from the Caucasus immedi- 
ately on the conclusion of peace, a proposal to which 


the Germans would not agree, as this would obviously 
mean that they would have to evacuate Poland, Cour- 
land, and Lithuania at the same time, to which Germany 
would never consent. After a hard struggle and re- 
peated efforts, we at last succeeded in persuading the 
Turks to give up this demand. The second Turkish 
objection was that Russia had not sufficiently clearly 
declared its intention of refraining from all interference 
in internal affairs. But the Turkish Foreign Minister 
agreed that internal affairs in Austria-Hungary were 
an even more perilous sphere for Russian intrigues 
than were the Turkish; if I had no hesitation in 
accepting, he also could be content. 

**The Bulgarians, who are represented by Popow, the 
Minister of Justice, as their chief, and some of whom 
cannot speak German at all, some hardly any French, 
did not get any proper idea of the whole proceedings 
until later on, and postponed their decision until the 

''December 24, 1917. — Morning and afternoon, long 
conferences with the Bulgarians, in the course of which 
Kuhlmann and I, on the one hand, and the Bulgarian 
representatives, on the other, were engaged with con- 
siderable heat. The Bulgarian delegates demanded 
that a clause should be inserted exempting Bulgaria 
from the no-annexation principle, and providing that 
the taking over by Bulgaria of Rumanian and Serbian 
territory should not be regarded as annexation. Such 
a clause would, of course, have rendered all our efforts 
null and void, and could not under any circumstances 
be agreed to. The discussion was attended with con- 
siderable excitement at times, and the Bulgarian 
delegates even threatened to withdraw altogether if we 
did not give way. Kuhlmann and my humble self 
remained perfectly firm, and told them we had no 
objection to their withdrawing if they pleased; they 


could also, if they pleased, send their own answer 
separately to the proposal, but no further alteration 
would be made in the draft which we, Kiihlmann and 
I, had drawn up. As no settlement could be arrived 
at, the plenary sitting was postponed to the 25th 
and the Bulgarian delegates wired to Sofia for fresh 

"The Bulgarians received a negative reply, and 
presumably the snub we had expected. They were very 
dejected, and made no further difficulty about agreeing 
to the common action. So the matter is settled as far as 
that goes. 

"In the afternoon I had more trouble with the Ger- 
mans. The German military party 'fear' that the 
Entente may, perhaps, be inclined to agree to a general 
peace, and could not think of ending the war in this 
'unprofitable' fashion. It is intolerable to have to 
listen to such twaddle. 

"If the great victories which the German generals 
are hoping for on the western front should be realized, 
there will be no bounds to their demands, and the diffi- 
culty of all negotiations will be still further increased. 

"December 25, ipi^. — The plenary sitting took place 
to-day, when we gave the Russians our. answer to their 
peace proposals. I was presiding, and delivered the 
answer, and Joffe replied. The general offer of peace is 
thus to be made, and we must await the result. In order 
to lose no time, however, the negotiations on matters 
concerning Russia are being continued meanwhile. 
We have thus made a good step forward, and perhaps 
got over the worst. It is impossible to say whether 
yesterday may not have been a decisive turning-point 
in the history of the world. 

''December 26, 191 7. — The special negotiations began 
at 9 A.M. The program drawn up by Kiihlmann, 
chiefly questions of economical matters and representa- 


tion, were dealt with so rapidly and smoothly that by 
II o'clock the sitting terminated, for lack of further 
matter to discuss. This is perhaps a good omen. 
Our people are using to-day to enter the results of the 
discussion in a report of proceedings, as the sitting is 
to be continued to-morrow, when territorial questions 
will be brought up. 

''December 26, 1917. — I have been out for a long 
walk. Alone. 

"On the way back, I met an old Jew. He was sitting 
in the gutter, weeping bitterly. He did not beg, did 
not even look at me, only wept and wept, and could 
not speak at first for sobs. And then he told me his 
story — Russian, Polish, and German, all mixed together. 

"Well, he had a store — Heaven knows where, but 
somewhere in the war zone. First came the Cossacks. 
They took all he had — his goats and his clothes and 
everything in the place — and then they beat him. 
Then the Russians retired, beat him again, en passant 
as it were, and then came the Germans. They fired 
his house with their guns, pulled off his boots, and beat 
him. Then he entered the service of the Germans, 
carrying water and wood, and receiving his food and 
beatings in return. But to-day he had got into trouble 
with them in some incomprehensible fashion; no food 
after that, only the beatings ; and was thrown into the 

"The beatings he referred to as something altogether 
natural. They were to him the natural accompaniment 
to any sort of action — but he could not Hve on beatings 

"I gave him what I had on me — money and cigars — 
told him the number of my house, and said he could 
come to-morrow, when I could get him a pass to go off 
somewhere where there were no Germans and no Rus- 
sians, and try to get him a place of some sort where he 


would be fed and not beaten. He took the money and 
cigars thankfully enough ; the story of the railway pass 
and the place he did not seem to believe. Railway 
traveling was for soldiers, and an existence without 
beatings seemed an incredible idea. 

"He kept on thanking me till I was out of sight, 
waving his hand, and thanking me in his German- 
Russian gibberish. 

''A terrible thing is war. Terrible at all times, but 
worst of all in one's own country. We at home suffer 
hunger and cold, but at least we have been spared up 
to now the presence of the enemy hordes. 

''This is a curious place — melancholy, yet with a 
beauty of its own. An endless fiat, with just a slight 
swelling of the ground, like an ocean set fast, wave 
behind wave as far as the eye can see. And all things 
gray, dead gray, to where this dead sea meets the gray 
horizon. Clouds race across the sky, the wind lashing 
them on. 

''This evening, before supper, Hoffmann informed 
the Russians of the German plans with regard to the 
outer provinces. The position is this: As long as the 
war in the west continues, the Germans cannot evacu- 
ate Courland and Lithuania, since, apart from the fact 
that they must be held as security for the general peace 
negotiations, these countries form part of the German 
munition establishment. The railway material, the 
factories, and, most of all, the grain are indispensable 
as long as the war lasts. That they cannot now with- 
draw from there at once is clear enough. If peace is 
signed, then the self-determination of the people in 
the occupied territory will decide. But here arises the 
great difficulty — how this right of self-determination 
is to be exercised. 

"The Russians naturally do not want the vote to be 
taken while the German bayonets are still in the coun- 


try, and the Germans reply that the unexampled ter- 
rorism of the Bolsheviks would falsify any election 
result, since the 'bourgeoisie,' according to Bolshevist 
ideas, are not human beings at all. My idea of having 
the proceedings controlled by a neutral Power was not 
altogether acceptable to any one. During the war 
no neutral Power would undertake the task, and the 
German occupation could not be allowed to last until 
the ultimate end. In point of fact, both sides are 
afraid of terrorization by the opposing party, and each 
wishes to apply the same itself. 

''December 26, 191 7. — There is no hurry, apparently, 
in this place. Now it is the Turks who are not ready, 
now the Bulgarians, then it is the Russians' turn — 
and the sitting is again postponed or broken off almost 
as soon as commenced. 

* ' I am reading some memoirs from the French Revo- 
lution. A most appropriate reading at the present 
time, in view of what is happening in Russia and may 
perhaps come throughout Europe. There were no 
Bolsheviks then, but men who tyrannized the world 
under the battle-cry of freedom were to be found in 
Paris then as well as now in St. Petersburg. Charlotte 
Cor day said: 'It was not a man, but a wild beast I 
killed.' These Bolsheviks in their turn will disappear, 
and who can say if there will be a Corday ready for 
Trotzky ? 

*'Joffe told me about the Tsar and his family, and 
the state of things said to exist there. He spoke with 
great respect of Nicolai Nicolaievitsch as a thorough 
man, full of energy and courage, one to be respected 
even as an enemy. The Tsar, on the other hand, he 
considered cowardly, false, and despicable. It was a 
proof of the incapacity of the bourgeoisie that they 
had tolerated such a Tsar. Monarchs were all of them 
more or less degenerate; he could not understand how 


any one could accept a form of government which 
involved the risk of having a degenerate ruler. I 
answered him as to this, that a monarchy had first 
of all one advantage, that there was at least one place 
in the state beyond the sphere of personal ambition 
and intrigues, and as to degeneration, that was often 
a matter of opinion: there were also degenerates to be 
found among the uncrowned rulers of states. Joffe 
considered that there would be no such risk when the 
people could choose for themselves. I pointed out 
that Hr. Lenin, for instance, had not been 'chosen,' 
and I considered it doubtful whether an impartial 
election would have brought him into power. Possibly 
there might be some in Russia who would consider 
him also degenerate. 

''December 27, IQ17. — ^The Russians are in despair, 
and some of them even talked of withdrawing alto- 
gether. They had thought the Germans would renounce 
all occupied territory without further parley, or hand 
it over to the Bolsheviks. Long sittings between the 
Russians, Kuhlmann, and myself, part of the time with 
Hoffmann. I drew up the following: 

" I . As long as general peace is not yet declared, we 
cannot give up the occupied areas ; they form part of 
our great munition works (factories, railways, sites 
with buildings, etc.). 

''2. After the general peace, a plebiscite in Poland, 
Courland, and Lithuania is to decide the fate of the 
people there : as to the form in which the vote is to be 
taken, this remains to be further discussed, in order that 
the Russians may have surety that no coercion is used. 
Apparently, this suits neither party. Situation much 


'' Afternoon.— Matters still getting worse. Furious 
wire from Hindenburg about 'renunciation' of every- 
thing; Ludendorff telephoning every minute; more 


furious outbursts, Hoffmann very excited, Kiihlmann 
true to his name and 'cool' as ever. The Russians 
declare they cannot accept the vague formulas of the 
Germans with regard to freedom of choice. 

"I told Kiihlmann and Hoffmann I would go as far 
as possible with them ; but should their endeavors fail, 
then I would enter into separate negotiations with the 
Russians, since Berlin and Petersburg were really both 
opposed to an uninfluenced vote. Austria-Hungary, 
on the other hand, desired nothing but final peace. 
Kiihlmann understands my position, and says he him- 
self would rather go than let it fail. Asked me to give 
him my point of view in writing, as it 'would strengthen 
his position.' Have done so. He has telegraphed 
it to the Kaiser. 

''Evening. — Kiihlmann believes matters will be set- 
tled — or broken off altogether — by to-morrow. 

''December 28, ipi 7.— General feeling, dull. Fresh 
outbursts of violence from Kreuznach. But at noon a 
wire from Bussche: Hertling had spoken with the 
Kaiser, who is perfectly satisfied. Kiihlmann said to 
me: 'The Kaiser is the only sensible man in the whole 
of Germany.* 

"We have at last agreed about the form of the com- 
mittee; that is, a committee ad hoc is to be formed in 
Brest, to work out a plan for the evacuation and voting 
in detail. Tant bien qiie mal, a provisional expedient. 
All home to report; next sitting to be held January 
5, 1918. 

"Russians again somewhat more cheerful. 

"This evening at dinner I rose to express thanks on 
the part of the Russians and the four alhes to Prince 
Leopold. He answered at once, and very neatly, 
but told me immediately afterward that I had taken 
him by surprise. As a matter of fact, I had been taken 
by surprise myself; no notice had been given; it was 


only during the dinner itself that the Germans asked 
me to speak. 

''Left at 10 P.M. for Vienna. 

''From the 29th to the morning of the 3d I was in 
Vienna. Two long audiences with the Emperor gave 
me the opportunity of telling him what had passed at 
Brest. He fully approves, of course, the point of view 
that peace must be made, if at all possible. 

' ' I have despatched a trustworthy agent to the outer 
provinces in order to ascertain the exact state of feeling 
there. He reports that all are against the Bolsheviks 
except the Bolsheviks themselves. The entire body of 
citizens, peasants — in a word, every one with any pos- 
sessions at all — trembles at the thought of these red 
robbers, and wishes to go over to Germany. The ter- 
rorism of Lenin is said to be indescribable, and in 
Petersburg all are absolutely longing for the entry of 
the German troops to deliver them. 

'January j, igi8. — Return to Brest. 

'On the way, at 6 p.m., I received, at a station, the 
following telegram, in code, from Baron Gautsch, 
who had remained at Brest: 

< < 


Russian delegation received following telegram from Peters- 
burg this morning: 'To General Hoffmann. For the representa- 
tives of the German, Austro-Hungarian, Bulgarian, and Turkish 
delegations. The government of the Russian Republic considers it 
necessary to carry on the further negotiations on neutral groimd, 
and proposes removing to Stockholm. Regarding attitude to the 
proposals as formulated by the German and Austro-Hungarian 
delegation in Points i and 2, the government of the Russian Republic 
and the Pan-Russian Central Executive Committee of the Councils 
of Workers', Soldiers' and Peasants' Deputies consider, in entire 
agreement with the view expressed by our delegation, that the 
proposals are contrary to the principle of national self-determina- 
tion, even in the restricted form in which it appears in Point 3 
of the reply given by the Four Powers on the 12 th ult. President 
of the Russian Delegation, A. Joffe. Major Brinkmann has com- 
municated this by telephone to the German delegation, already 


on the way here. Herr von Kuhlmann has sent a telephone message 
in return that he is continuing the journey and will arrive at Brest 
this evening/ 

"I also went on, of course, considering this maneuver 
on the part of the Russians as rather in the nature of 
bluffing. If they do not come, then we can treat with 
the Ukrainians, who should be in Brest by now. 

"In Vienna I saw, among politicians, Baernreither, 
Hauser, Wekerle, Seidler, and some few others. The 
opinion of almost all may be summed up as follows: 
Teace must be arranged, but a separate peace without 
Germany is impossible,^ 

*'No one has told me how I am to manage it if 
neither Germany nor Russia will listen to reason. 

*' January 4, igi8. — Fearful snowstorm in the night; 
the heating apparatus in the train was frozen, and the 
journey consequently far from pleasant. On awaking 
early at Brest the trains of the Bulgarians and Turks 
were standing on adjacent sidings. Weather magnif- 
icent now: cold, and the air as at St. Moritz. I went 
across to Kuhlmann, had breakfast with him, and talked 
over events in Beriin. There seems to have been 
desperate excitement there. Kuhlmann suggested to 
Ludendorff that he should come to Brest himself and 
take part in the negotiations. After long discussion, 
however, it appeared that Ludendorff himself was not 
quite clear as to what he wanted, and declared spontane- 
ously that he considered it superfluous for him to go 
to Brest; he would, at best, 'only spoil things if he 
did.' Heaven grant the man such gleams of insight 
again and often! It seems as if the whole trouble is 
more due to feeHng against Kuhlmann than to anything 
in the questions at issue; people do not want the 
world to have the impression that the peace was gained 
by 'adroit diplomacy,' but by military success alone. 
General Hoffmann appears to have been received with 


marked favor by the Kaiser, and both he and Kuhlmann 
declare themselves well satisfied with the results of 
their journey. 

"We talked over the reply to the Petersburg tele- 
gram, declining a conference in vStockholm, and further 
tactics to be followed in case of need. We agreed that 
if the Russians did not come we must declare the 
armistice at an end, and chance what the Petersburgers 
would say to that. On this point Kuhlmann and I 
were entirely agreed. Nevertheless, the feeling, both 
in our party and in that of the Germans, was not a 
little depressed. Certainly, if the Russians do break 
off negotiations, it will place us in a very unpleasant 
position. The only way to save the situation is by 
acting quickly and energetically with the Ukrainian 
delegation, and we therefore commenced this work 
on the afternoon of the same day. There is thus at 
least a hope that we may be able to arrive at positive 
results with them within reasonable time. 

*'In the evening, after dinner, came a wire from 
Petersburg announcing the arrival of the delegation, 
including the Foreign Minister, Trotzky. It was 
interesting to see the delight of all the Germans at the 
news; not until this sudden and violent outbreak of 
satisfaction was it fully apparent how seriously they 
had been affected by the thought that the Russians 
would not come. Undoubtedly this is a great step 
forward, and we all feel that peace is really now on the 

''January 5, igi8. — ^At seven this morning a few of 
us went out shooting with Prince Leopold of Bavaria. 
We went for a distance of 20 to 30 kilometers by train, 
and then in open automobiles^ to a magnificent primeval 
forest extending over two to three hundred square 
kilometers. Weather very cold, but fine, much snow, 
and pleasant company. From the point of view of 


sport, it was poorer than one could have expected. 
One of the Prince's aides stuck a pig, another shot two 
hares, and that was all. Back at 6 p.m. 

''January 6, igi8. — To-day we had the first dis- 
cussions with the Ukrainian delegates, all of whom 
were present except the leader. The Ukrainians are 
very different from the Russian delegates. Far less 
revolutionary, and with far more interest in their own 
country, less in the progress of SociaHsm generally. 
They do not really care about Russia at all, but think 
only of the Ukraine, and their efforts are solely directed 
toward attaining their own independence as soon as 
possible. Whether that independence is to be com- 
plete and international, or only as within the bounds 
of a Russian federative state, they do not seem quite 
to know themselves. Evidently, the very intelHgent 
Ukrainian delegates intended to use us as a springboard 
from which they themselves could spring upon the 
Bolsheviks. Their idea was that we should acknowl- 
edge their independence, and then, with this as a Jait 
accompli, they could face the Bolsheviks and force them 
to recognize their equal standing and treat with them 
on that basis. Our line of poHcy, however, must be 
either to bring over the Ukrainians to our peace basis, 
or else to drive a wedge between them and the Peters- 
burgers. As to their desire for independence, we 
declared ourselves willing to recognize this, provided 
the Ukrainians on their part would agree to the follow- 
ing three points : i . The negotiations to be concluded 
at Brest-Litovsk and not at Stockholm. 2. Recogni- 
tion of the former poHtical frontier between Austria- 
Hungary and Ukraine. 3. Non-interference of any 
one state in the internal affairs of another. Char- 
acteristically enough, no answer has yet been received 
to this proposal ! 

''January 7, igi8. — This forenoon, all the Russians 


arrived, under the leadership of Trotzky. They at 
once sent a message asking to be excused for not appear- 
ing at meals with the rest for the future. At other 
times we see nothing of them. The wind seems to 
be in a very different quarter now from what it was. 
The German officer who accompanied the Russian 
delegation from Dunaburg, Captain Baron Lamezan, 
gave us some interesting details as to this. In the first 
place, he declared that the trenches in front of Duna- 
burg are entirely deserted, and save for an outpost 
or so there were no Russians there at all; also, that 
at many stations delegates were waiting for the deputa- 
tion to pass, in order to demand that peace should be 
made. Trotzky had throughout answered them with 
polite and careful speeches, but grew ever more and 
more depressed. Baron Lamezan had the impression 
that the Russians were altogether desperate now, hav- 
ing no choice save between going back with a bad 
peace or with no peace at all; in either case with the 
same result — that they would be swept away. Kiihl- 
mann said, 'lis n*ont que le choix a quelle sauce ils se 
feront manger.' I answered, 'Tout comme chez nous.' 

''A wire had just come in reporting demonstrations 
in Budapest against Germany. The windows of the 
German Consulate were broken, a clear indication of 
the state of feeling which would arise if the peace were 
to be lost through our demands. 

''January 8, 1918. — The Turkish Grand Vizier, 
Talaat Pasha, arrived during the night, and has just 
been to call on me. He seems emphatically in favor 
of making peace; but I fancy he would Hke, in case 
of any conflict arising with Germany, to push me into 
the foreground and keep out of the way himself. 
Talaat Pasha is one of the cleverest heads among the 
Turks, and perhaps the most energetic man of them all. 

''Before the Revolution he was a minor official in the 


telegraph service, and was on the revolutionary com- 
mittee. In his official capacity, he got hold of a tele- 
gram from the government which showed him that the 
revolutionary movement would be discovered and the 
game lost unless immediate action were taken. He 
suppressed the message, warned the revolutionary com- 
mittee, and persuaded them to start their work at once. 
The coup succeeded, the Sultan was deposed, and 
Talaat was made Minister of the Interior. With iron 
energy he then turned his attention to the suppression 
of the opposing movement. Later he became Grand 
Vizier, and impersonated, together with Enver Pasha, 
the will and power of Turkey. 

*'This afternoon, first a meeting of the five heads 
of the allied delegations and the Russian. Afterward, 
plenary sitting. 

*'The sitting postponed again, as the Ukrainians are 
still not ready with their preparations. Late in the 
evening I had a conversation with Kiihlmann and 
Hoffmann, in which we agreed fairly well as to tactics. 
I said again that I was ready to stand by them and 
hold to their demands as far as ever possible, but in 
the event of Germany's breaking off the negotiations 
with Russia I must reserve the right to act with a free 
hand. Both appeared to understand my point of view, 
especially Kiihlmann, who, if he alone should decide, 
would certainly not allow the negotiations to prove 
fruitless. As to details, we agreed to demand con- 
tinuation of the negotiations at Brest- Li tovsk in the 
form of an ultimatum. 

''January p, igi8. — Acting on the principle that 
attack is the best defense, we had determined not to 
let the Russian Foreign Minister speak at all, but to 
go at him at once with our ultimatum. 

"Trotzky had prepared a long speech, and the effect 
of our attack was such that he at once appealed for 


adjournment, urging that the altered state of affairs 
called for new resolutions. The removal of the con- 
ference to Stockholm would have meant the end of 
matters for us, for it would have been utterly impos- 
sible to keep the Bolsheviks of all countries from 
putting in an appearance there, and the very thing we 
had endeavored with the utmost of our power to avoid 
from the start — to have the reins torn from our hands 
and these elements take the lead — would infallibly 
have taken place. We must now wait to see what to- 
morrow brings : either a victory or the final termination 
of the negotiations. 

''Adler said to me in Vienna, 'You will certainly get 
on all right with Trotzky,' and when I asked him why 
he thought so, he answered, 'Well, you and I get on 
quite well together, you know.' 

"I think, after all, the clever old man failed to 
appreciate the situation there. These Bolsheviks have 
no longer anything in common with Adler; they are 
brutal tyrants, autocrats of the worst kind, a disgrace 
to the name of freedom. 

''Trotzky is undoubtedly an interesting, clever 
fellow, and a very dangerous adversary. He is quite 
exceptionally gifted as a speaker, with a swiftness and 
adriotness in retort which I have rarely seen, and has, 
moreover, all the insolent boldness of his race. 

''January 10, igi8. — The sitting has just taken place. 
Trotzky made a great and, in its way, really fine speech, 
calculated for the whole of Europe, in which he gave 
way entirely. He accepts, he says, the German- 
Austria 'ultimatum,' and will remain in Brest-Litovsk, 
as he will not give us the satisfaction of being able to 
blame Russia for the continuation of the war. 

"Following on Trotzky 's speech, the committee was 

at once formed to deal with the difficult questions 

of territory. I insisted on being on the committee 


myself, wishing to follow throughout the progress of 
these important negotiations. This was not an easy 
matter really, as the questions involved, strictly speak- 
ing, concern only Courland and Lithuania — i.e., they 
are not our business, but Germany's alone. 

"In the evening I had another long talk with Kiihl- 
mann and Hoffmann, in the course of which the general 
and the Secretary of State came to high words between 
themselves. Hoffmann, elated at the success of our 
ultimatum to Russia, wished to go on in the same 
fashion and 'give the Russians another touch of the 
whip.' Kiihlmann and I took the opposite view, and 
insisted that proceedings should be commenced quietly, 
confining ourselves to the matters in hand, clearing 
up point by point as we went on, and putting all doubt- 
ful questions aside. Once we had got so far, in clearing 
up things generally, we could then take that which 
remained together, and possibly get telegraphic instruc- 
tions from the two Emperors for dealing therewith. 
This is undoubtedly the surest way to avoid disaster 
and a fresh breach. 

''A new conflict has cropped up with the Ukrainians. 
They now demand recognition of their independence, 
and declare they will leave if this is not conceded. 

''Adler told me at Vienna that Trotzky had his 
library, by which he set great store, somewhere in 
Vienna, with a Herr Bauer, I fancy. I told Trotzky 
that I would arrange to have the books forwarded to 
him, if he cared about it. I then recommended to 
his consideration certain prisoners of war, as L. K. and 
W., all of whom are said to have been very badly 
treated. Trotzky noted the point, declared that he 
was strongly opposed to ill-treatment of prisoners of 
war, and promised to look into the matter; he wished 
to point out, however, that in so doing he was not in 
the least influenced by the thought of his library; he 


would in any case have considered my request. He 
would be glad to have the books. 

''January 11, igi8. — Forenoon and afternoon, long 
sittings of the committee on territorial questions. Our 
side is represented by Kiihlmann, Hoffmann, Rosen- 
berg, and a secretary, in addition to myself, Csicserics, 
Wiesner, and Colloredo. The Russians are all present, 
but without the Ukrainians. I told Kiihlmann that I 
only proposed to attend as a second, seeing that the 
German interests were incomparably more affected 
than our own. I only interpose now and again. 

* ' Trotzky made a tactical blunder this afternoon. In 
a speech rising to violence he declared that we were 
playing false; we aimed at annexations, and were 
simply trying to cover them with the cloak of self- 
determination. He would never agree to this, and 
would rather break off altogether than continue in that 
way. If we were honest, we should allow representa- 
tives from Poland, Courland, and Lithuania to come 
to Brest, and there express their views without being 
influenced in any way by ourselves. Now it should 
here be noted that from the commencement of the 
negotiations it has been a point of conflict whether the 
legislative bodies at present existing in. the occupied 
territories are justified in speaking in the name of their 
respective peoples, or not. We affirm that they are; 
the Russians maintain they are not. We at once 
accepted Trotzky's proposal, that representatives of 
these countries should be called, but added that, when 
we agreed to accept their testimony, then their judg- 
ment also in our favor should be taken as valid. 

*'It was characteristic to s^e how gladly Trotzky 
would have taken back what he had said. But he 
kept his countenance, fell in with the new situation at 
once, and requested that the sitting be adjourned 
for twenty-four hours, as our reply was of such far- 


reaching importance that he must confer with his 
colleagues on the matter. I hope Trotzky will make 
no difhculty now. If the Poles could be called, it would 
be an advantage. The awkward thing about it is that 
Germany, too, would rather be without them, knowing 
the anti-Prussian feeling that exists among the Poles. 

'' Jamiary 12, igi8. — Radek has had a scene with the 
German chauffeur, which led to something more. 
General Hoffmann had placed cars at the disposal of the 
Russians in case they cared to drive out. In this case 
it happened that the chauffeur was not there at the 
proper time, and Radek flew into a rage with the man 
and abused him violently. The chauffeur complained, 
and Hoffmann took his part. Trotzky seems to con- 
sider Hoffmann's action correct, and has forbidden the 
entire delegation to go out any more. That settled 
them. And serve them right. 

"No one ventured to protest. They have indeed a 
holy fear of Trotzky. At the sittings, too, no one 
dares to speak while he is there. 

''January 12, IQ18. — Hoffmann has made his unfor- 
tunate speech. He has been working at it for days, 
and was very proud of the result. Kiihlmann and I 
did not conceal from him that he gained nothing by it 
beyond exciting the people at home against us. This 
made a certain impression on him, but it was soon 
effaced by Ludendorff 's congratulations, which followed 
promptly. Anyhow, it has rendered the situation more 
difficult, and there was certainly no need for that. 

''January ij, 191 8. — I had a letter to-day from one 
of our mayors at home, calHng my attention to the fact 
that disaster due to lack of foodstuffs is now imminent. 

' ' I immediately telegraphed the Emperor as follows : 

"I have just received a letter from Statthalter N.N. which 
justifies all the fears I have constantly repeated to your Majesty, 
and shows that in the question of food-supplies we are on the very 


verge of a catastrophe. The situation arising out of the carelessness 
and incapacity of the Ministers is terrible, and I fear it is already 
too late to check the total collapse which is to be expected in the 
next few weeks. My informant writes: 'Only small quantities are 
now being received from Hungary, from Rumania only 10,000 
wagons of maize; this gives then a decrease of at least 30,000 
wagons of grain, without which we must infallibly perish. On 
learning the state of affairs, I went to the Prime Minister to speak 
with him about it. I told him, as is the case, that in a few weeks 
our war industries, our railway traffic, would be at a standstill, the 
provisioning of the army would be impossible, it must break down, 
and that would mean the collapse of Austria and therewith also of 
Hungary. To each of these points he answered yes, that is so, 
and added that all was being done to alter the state of affairs, 
especially as regards the Hungarian deliveries. But no one, not 
even his Majesty, has been able to get anything done. We can 
only hope that some deus ex machhia may intervene to save us from 
the worst.' 

"To this I added: 

" I can find no words to describe properly the apathetic attitude 
of Seidler. How often and how earnestly have I not implored your 
Majesty to intervene forcibly for once and compel Seidler, on the 
one hand, and Hadik, on the other, to set these things in order. 
Even from here I have written entreating your Majesty to act while 
there was yet time. But all in vain. 

' ' I then pointed out that the only way of meeting the 
situation would be to secure temporary assistance from 
Germany, and then to requisition by force the stocks 
that were doubtless still available in Hungary ; finally, 
I begged the Emperor to inform the Austrian Prime 
Minister of my telegram. 

''January 16, igi8. — Despairing appeals from Vienna 
for food-supplies. Would I apply at once to Berlin 
for aid, otherwise disaster imminent. I replied to 
General Landwehr as follows: 

"Doctor Kiihlmann is telegraphing to Berlin, but has little hope 
of success. The only hope now is for his Majesty to do as I have 
advised, and send an urgent wire at once to Kaiser Wilhelm. On 


my return I propose to put before his Majesty my point of view, 
that it is impossible to carry on the foreign poUcy if the food question 
at home is allowed to come to such a state as now. 

"Only a few weeks back your Excellency declared most posi- 
tively that we could hold out till the new harvest. 

''At the same time I wired the Emperor: 

"Telegrams arriving show the situation becoming critical for 
us. Regarding question of food, we can only avoid collapse on two 
conditions: first, that Germany helps us temporarily, second, that 
we use this respite to set in order our machinery of food-supply, 
which is at present beneath contempt, and to gain possession of the 
stocks still existing in Hungary. 

"I have just explained the entire situation to Doctor Kiihlmann, 
and he is telegraphing to Berlin. He, however, is not at all san- 
guine, as Germany is itself in straitened circumstances. I think 
the only way to secure any success from this step would be for your 
Majesty to send at once, through the military organs, a Hughes 
telegram to Kaiser Wilhelm direct, urgently entreating him to 
intervene himself, and by securing us a supply of grain prevent the 
outbreak of revolution, which would otherwise be inevitable. I 
must, however, emphatically point out that the commencement of 
unrest among our people at home will have rendered conclusion of 
peace here absolutely impossible. As soon as the Russian repre- 
sentatives perceive that we ourselves are on the point of revolution, 
they will not make peace at all, since their entire speculation is 
based on this factor. 

''January ij^ igi8. — Bad news from Vienna and 
environs: serious strike movement, due to the reduc- 
tion of the flour rations and the tardy progress of the 
Brest negotiations. The weakness of the Vienna 
Ministry seems to be past all understanding. 

"I have telegraphed to Vienna that I hope in time 
to secure some suppHes from the Ukraine, if only we 
can manage to keep matters quiet at home for the next 
few weeks, and I have begged the gentlemen in question 
to do their utmost not to wreck the peace here. On 
the same day, in the evening, I telegraphed to Doctor 
von Seidler, the Prime Minister: 


"I very greatly regret my inability to counteract the effect of 
all the errors made by those intrusted with the food resources. 

"Germany declares categorically that it is unable to help us, 
having insufficient for itself. 

"Had your Excellency or your department called attention to 
the state of things in time, it might still have been possible to procure 
supplies from Rumania. As things are now, I can see no other 
way than that of brute force, by requisitioning Hungarian grain 
for the time being, and forwarding it to Austria, until the Ru- 
manian, and it is to be hoped also Ukrainian, supplies can come 
to hand. 

''January 20, igi8. The negotiations have now come 
to this: that Trotzky declares his intention of laying 
the German proposals before Petersburg, though he 
cannot accept them himself; he undertakes, in any 
case, to return here. As to calling in representatives 
from the other provinces, he will only do this provided 
he is allowed to choose them. We cannot agree to this. 
With the Ukrainians, who, despite their youth, are 
showing themselves quite sufficiently grown to profit 
by the situation, negotiations are proceeding but 
slowly. First they demanded East Galicia for the new 
'Ukrainia.' This could not be entertained for a 
moment. Then they grew more modest, but since the 
outbreak of trouble at home among ourselves they 
realized our position and know that we must make 
peace in order to get corn. Now they demand a 
separate position for East Galicia. The question will 
have to be decided in Vienna, and the Austrian Minis- 
try will have the final word. 

*'Seidler and Landwehr again declare by telegram that 
without supplies of grain from Ukraine the catastrophe 
is imminent. There ar^ supplies in the Ukraine; if we 
can get them the worst may be avoided. 

"The position now is this: Without help from out- 
side, we shall, according to Seidler, have thousands 
perishing in a few weeks. Germany and Hungary 


are no longer sending anything. All messages state 
that there is a great surplus in Ukraine. The question 
is only whether we can get it in time. I hope we may. 
But if we do not make peace soon, then the troubles at 
home will be repeated, and each demonstration in 
Vienna will render peace here most costly to obtain, for 
Messrs. Sewrjuk and Lewicky can read the degree of 
our state of famine at home from these troubles as by 
a thermometer. If only the people who create these 
disturbances know how they are by that very fact 
increasing the difficulty of procuring supplies from 
Ukraine ! And we were all but finished ! 

*'The question of East Galicia I will leave to the 
Austrian Ministry; it must be decided in Vienna. I 
cannot, and dare not, look on and see hundreds of 
thousands starve for the sake of retaining the sympathy 
of the Poles, as long as there is a possibility of help. 

''January 21, IQ18. — Back to Vienna. The impres- 
sion of the troubles here is even greater than I thought, 
and the effect disastrous. The Ukrainians no longer 
treat with us; they dictate! 

*'0n the way, reading through old reports, I came 
upon the notes relating to the discussions with Michaelis 
on August ist. According to these, Under-Secretary 
of State von Stumm said at the time : 

**'The Foreign Ministry was in communication with 
the Ukrainians, and the separatist movement in 
Ukrainia was very strong. In furtherance of their 
movement, the Ukrainians demanded the assurance 
that they should be allowed to unite with the govern- 
ment of Cholm, and with the areas of East Galicia 
occupied by Ukrainians. So long as Galicia belongs 
to Austria the demand for East Galicia cannot be con- 
ceded. It would be another matter if Galicia were 
united with Poland; then a cession of East Galicia 
might be possible,' 


"It would seem that the unpleasant case had long 
since been prejudged by the Germans. 

*'0n January 2 2d the council was held which was to 
determine the issue of the Ukrainian question. The 
Emperor opened the proceedings, and then called on 
me to speak. I described first of all the difficulties 
that lay in the way of a peace with Petersburg, which 
will be apparent from the foregoing entries in this 
diary. I expressed my doubt as to whether our group 
would succeed in concluding general peace with Peters- 
burg. I then sketched the course of the negotiations 
with the Ukrainians. I reported that the Ukrainians 
had originally demanded the cession of East Galicia, 
but that I had refused this. With regard to the 
Ruthenian districts of Hungary also they had made 
demands which had been refused by me. At present 
they demanded the division of GaHcia into two parts 
and the formation of an independent Austrian province 
from East GaHcia and Bukovina. I pointed out the 
serious consequences which the acceptance of the 
Ukrainian demands would have upon the further 
development of the Austro-Polish question. The con- 
cessions made by the Ukrainians on their part were to 
consist in the inclusion in the peace treaty of a com- 
mercial agreement which would enable us to cover 
our immediate needs in the matter of grain-supplies. 
Furthermore, Austria-Hungary would insist on full 
reciprocity of the Poles resident in Ukraine. 

''I pointed out emphatically that I considered it 
my duty to state the position of the peace negotiations; 
that the decision could not lie with me, but with the 
Ministry as a whole, in particular with the Austrian 
Prime Minister. The Austrian government would 
have to decide whether these sacrifices could be made 
or not, and here I could leave them in no doubt that 
if we declined the Ukrainian demands we should proba<- 


bly come to no result with that country, and should 
thus be compelled to return from Brest-Litovsk with- 
out having achieved any peace settlement at all. 

''When I had finished, the Prime Minister, Doctor 
von Seidler, rose to speak. He pointed out first of all 
the necessity of an immediate peace, and then dis- 
cussed the question of establishing a Ukrainian crown 
land, especially from the parliamentary point of view. 
Seidler believed that, despite the active opposition 
which was to be expected from the Poles, he would still 
have a majority of two-thirds in the house for the 
acceptance of the bill on the subject. He was not 
blind to the fact that arrangement would give rise to 
violent parhamentary. conflicts, but repeated his hope 
that a two-thirds majority could be obtained despite 
the opposition of the Pohsh delegation. After Seidler 
came the Hungarian Prime Minister, Doctor Wekerle. 
He was particularly pleased to note that no concessions 
had been made to the Ukrainians with regard to the 
Ruthenians resident in Hungary. A clear division of 
the nationahties in Hungary was impracticable. The 
Hungarian Ruthenians were also at too low a stage of 
culture to enable them to be given national indepen- 
dence. Doctor Wekerle also laid stress on the danger, 
also in Austria, of allov/ing any interference from with- 
out; the risk of any such proceeding would be very 
great; we should find ourselves on a downward grade 
by so doing, and we must hold firmly to the principle 
that no interference in the affair of the Monarchy 
from without could be tolerated. In summing up, 
however, Wekerle opposed the point of s^iew of the 
Austrian Prime Minister. 

"I then rose again to speak, and declared that I was 
perfectly aware of the eminent importance and perilous 
aspects of this step:^ It was true that it would bring 
us on to a down-grade, but from all appearances we^ 


had been in that position already for a long time, 
owing to the war, and could not say how far it might 
lead us. I put the positive question to Doctor Wekerle, 
what was a responsible leader of our foreign policy 
to do when the Austrian Prime Minister and both the 
Ministers of Food unanimously declared that the Hun- 
garian supplies would only suffice to help us over the 
ne^t two months, after which time a collapse would be 
absolutely unavoidable, unless w^e could secure assist- 
ance fromx somewhere in the way of com. On being 
interrupted here by a dissentient observation from 
Doctor Wekerle, I told him that if he, Wekerle, could 
bring corn into Austria I should be the first to support 
his point of view, and that with pleasure, but as long 
as he stood by his categorical denial and insisted on his 
inability to help us, we were in the position of a man 
on the third floor of a burning house who jumps out of 
the window to save himself. A man in such a situation 
would not stop to think whether he risked breaking his 
legs or not; he would prefer the risk of death to the 
certainty of the same. If the position really were 
as stated, that in a couple of months we should be 
altogether without food-supplies, then we must take 
the consequences of such a position. Doctor von 
Seidler here once more took up the discussion, and 
declared himself entirely in agreement with my re- 

"During the further course of the debate, the proba- 
bility of a definitive failure of the Austro-Polish solu- 
tion in connection with the Ukrainian peace was dis- 
cussed, and the question was raised as to what new 
constellation would arise out of such failure. Sek- 
tionschef Doctor Gratz then took up this question. 
Doctor Gratz pointed out that the Austro-Polish 
solution must fail even without acceptance of the 
Ukrainian demands, since the German postulates ren- 


dered solution impossible. The Germans demanded, 
apart from quite enormous territorial reductions of 
Congress-Poland, the restriction of Polish industry, 
part possession of the Polish railways and state domains, 
as well as the imposition of part of the costs of war 
upon the Poles. We could not attach ourselves to a 
Poland thus weakened, hardly, indeed, capable of living 
at all, and necessarily highly dissatisfied with its posi- 
tion. Doctor Gratz maintained that it would be wiser 
to come back to the program already discussed in 
general form; the project, by which United Poland 
should be left to Germany, and the attachment of 
Rumania to the Monarchy in consequence. Doctor 
Gratz went at length into the details of this point of 
view. The Emperor then summed up the essence 
of the opinions expressed to-day as indicating that 
it was primarily necessary to make peace with Peters- 
burg and the Ukrainians, and that negotiations should 
be entered upon with Ukrainia as to the division of 
Galicia. The question as to whether the Austro-Polish 
solution should be definitely allowed to drop was not 
finally settled, but shelved for the time being. 

*'In conclusion. Doctor Burian, the Minister of 
Finance, rose to speak, and pointed out, as Doctor 
Wekerle had done, the danger of the Austrian stand- 
point. Burian declared that, while the war might 
doubtless change the internal structure of the Mon- 
archy, such alterations must be made from within, 
not from without, if it were to be of any benefit to the 
Monarchy at all. He further pointed out that if the 
Austrian principle of the division of Galicia were to 
be carried through, the form of so doing would be of 
great importance. Baron Burian advised that a clause 
referring to this should be inserted, not in the instru- 
ment of peace itself, but in a secret annexe. This 
form was, in his, Burian^s, view, the only possible means 


of diminishing the serious consequences of the steps 
which the Austrian government wished to take." 

Thus the notes of my diary relative to this Council. 
The Austrian government was thus not only agreed 
as to the proposed arrangement with the Ukraine; 
it was indeed at the direct wish of the government, by 
its instigation and on its responsibility, that it was 
brought about. 

''January 28, igi8. — Reached Brest this evening. 

''January 2Q, IQ18. — Trotzky arrived. 

"January jo, igi8. — The first plenary session has 
been held. There is no doubt that the revolutionary 
happenings in Austria and in Germany have enor- 
mously raised the hopes of the Petersburgers for a gen- 
eral convulsion, and it seems to me altogether out of 
the question now to come to any peace terms with 
the Russians. It is evident among the Russians them- 
selves that they positively expect the outbreak of a 
world-revolution within the next few weeks, and their 
tactics now are simply to gain time and wait for this 
to happen. The conference was not marked by any 
particular event, only pin-pricks between Kuhlmann 
and Trotzky. To-day is the first sitting of the com- 
mittee on territorial questions, where I am to preside, 
and deal with our territorial affairs. 

*'The only interesting point about the new con- 
stellation seems to be that the relations between Peters- 
burg and Kieff are considerably worse than before, 
and the Kieff Committee is no longer recognized at all 
by the Bolsheviks as independent. 

"February i, igi8. — Sitting of the territorial com- 
mittee, I myself presiding, with the Petersburg Rus- 
sians. My plan is to play the Petersburgers and the 
Ukrainians one against the other and manage at least 
to make peace with one of the two parties. I have 
still some slight hope that a peace with one may so 


affect the other that possibly peace with both may be 

**As was to be expected, Trotzky replied to my 
question, whether he admitted that the Ukrainians 
should treat with us alone on questions dealing with 
their frontiers, with an emphatic denial. I then, after 
some exchange of words, proposed that the sitting be 
adjourned and a plenary sitting convened, in order 
that the matter might be dealt with by the Kieff and 
Petersburg parties together. 

''February 2, igi8. — I have tried to get the Ukrai- 
nians to talk over things openly with the Russians, and 
succeeded almost too well. The insults hurled by the 
Ukrainians to-day against the Russians were simply 
grotesque, and showed what a gulf is fixed between 
these two governments and that it is not our fault 
that we have not been able to bring them together 
under one hat on the question of peace. Trotzky 
was so upset it was painful to see. Perfectly pale, he 
stared fixedly before him, drawing nervously on his 
blotting-paper. Heavy drops of sweat trickled down 
his forehead. Evidently he felt deeply the disgrace 
of being abused by his fellow-citizens in the presence 
of the enemy. 

"The two brothers Richthofen were here a little 
while ago. The elder has shot down some sixty, the 
younger 'only' some thirty, enemy airmen. The elder's 
face is like that of a young and pretty girl. He told 
me 'how the thing is done.' It is very simple. Only 
get as near to the enemy as possible, from behind, 
and then keep on shooting, when the other man would 
fall. The one thing needful was to 'get over your own 
fright,' and not be shy of getting quite close to your 
opponent. Modem heroes. 

"Two charming stories were told about these two 
brothers. The English had put a price on the head of 


the elder Richthofen. When he learned of this he 
sent down broadsheets informing them that, to make 
matters easier for them, he would from the following 
day have his machine painted bright red. Next morn- 
ing, going to the shed, he found all the machines there 
painted bright red. One for all and all for one. 

''The other story is this: Richthofen and an English 
airman were circling round each other and firing furi- 
ously. They came closer and closer, and soon they 
could distinctly see each other's faces. Suddenly 
something went wrong with Richthofen's machine-gun 
and he could not shoot. The Englishman looked across 
in surprise and, seeing what was wrong, waved his 
hand, turned, and flew off. Fair play! I should like 
to meet that Englishman, only to tell him that he is 
greater, to my mind, than the heroes of old. 

''February j, igi8. — Started for Berlin. Kuhlmann, 
Hoffmann, Colloredo. 

''February 4, igi8. — ^Arrived Berlin. Nothing this 
afternoon, as the Germans are holding council among 

"February 5, igi8. — Sitting all day. I had several 
violent passages of arms with Ludendorff. Matters 
seemed to be clearing up, though this is not yet alto- 
gether done. Apart from deciding on our tactics for 
Brest, we have at last to set down in writing that we 
are only obliged to fight for the pre-war possessions of 
Germany. Ludendorff was violently opposed to this, 
and said, 'If Germany makes peace without profit, 
then Germany has lost the war.* 

"The controversy was growing more and more 
heated, when Hertling nudged me and whispered, 
'Leave him alone; we two will manage it together 
without him.' 

"I am now going to work out the draft at once and 
send it in to Hertling. 


"Supper this evening at Hohenlohe. 

"February 6, igi8. — ^Arrived Brest this evening. 
Wiesner has been at it untiringly and done excellent 
work; the situation, too, is easier now. The leader 
of the Austrian Ruthenians, Nikolay Wassilko, arrived 
yesterday, and albeit evidently excited by the part 
his Russian-Ukrainian comrades are playing at Brest, 
speaks nationally, far more chauvinistically than when I 
thought I knew him in Vienna, and we have at last 
agreed on the minimum of the Ukrainian demands. I 
gave as my advice in Berlin that we should try to finish 
with the Ukrainians as soon as possible. I could then 
in the name of Germany commence negotiations with 
Trotzky, and try if I could not get speech with him 
privately, and find out whether any agreement were 
possible or not. It is Gratz's idea. After some opposi- 
tion we agreed. 

''February 7, IQ18. — My conversation with Trotzky 
took place. I took Gratz with me; he has far exceeded 
all my expectations of him. I began by telling Trotzky 
that a breach of the regulations and a resumption of 
hostiHties were imminent, and wished to know if this 
could not be avoided before the fatal step were definitely 
taken. I therefore begged Herr Trotzky to inform me 
openly and without reserve what conditions he would 
accept. Trotzky then declared very frankly and clearly 
that he was not so simple as we appeared to think, 
that he knew well enough force was the strongest of all 
arguments, and that the Central Powers were quite 
capable of taking away the Russian provinces. He 
had several times tried to bridge a way for Kuhhnann 
during the conference, telHng him it was not a question 
of the right of self-determination of the peoples in the 
occupied districts, but of sheer brutal annexation, and 
that he must give way to force. He would never 
relinquish his principles, and would never give his con- 


sent to this interpretation of the right of self-determina- 
tion. The Germans must say straight out what were 
the boundaries they demanded, and he would then 
make clear to all Europe that it was a brutal annexa- 
tion and nothing else, but that Russia was too weak 
to oppose it. Only the Moon Sound Islands seemed 
to be more than he could swallow. Secondly, and 
this is very characteristic, Trotzky said he could never 
agree to our making peace with the Ukraine, since the 
Ukraine was no longer in the hands of its Rada, but 
in the hands of his troops. It was a part of Russia, 
and to make peace with it would be interfering in the 
internal affairs of Russia itself. The fact of the matter 
seems to be that about nineteen days ago the Russian 
troops really did enter Kieff, but were subsequently 
driven out, the Rada once more coming into power as 
before. Whether Trotzky was unaware of this latter 
development or purposely concealed the truth I cannot 
say for certain, but it seems as if the former were the 

''The last hope of coming to an understanding with 
Petersburg has vanished. An appeal from the Peters- 
burg government to the German soldiers has been 
discovered in BerHn, inciting them to revolt, to murder 
the Kaiser and their generals, and unite with the 
Soviets. Following on this came a telegram from 
Kaiser Wilhelm to Kuhlmann ordering him to terminate 
negotiations at once by demanding, besides Courland 
and Lithuania, also the unoccupied territories of 
Livonia and Esthonia — all without regard to the right 
of self-determination of the peoples concerned. 

''The dastardly behavior of these Bolsheviks renders 
negotiations impossible. I cannot blame Germany for 
being incensed at such proceedings, but the instructions 
from Berlin are hardly likely to be carried out. We 
do not want to drag in Livonia and Esthonia. 



''February 8, igi8. — This evening the peace with 
Ukraine is to be signed. The first peace in this terrible 
war. I wonder if the Rada is still really sitting at 
Kieff? Wassilko showed me a Hughes message dated 
6th inst. from Kieff to the Ukrainian delegation here, 
and Trotzky has declined my suggestion to despatch 
an officer of the Austrian General Staff to the spot, in 
order to bring back reliable information. Evidently, 
then, his assertion that the Bolsheviks were already 
masters at Kieff was only a ruse. Gratz informs me, 
by the way, that Trotzky, with whom he spoke early 
this morning, is much depressed at our intention of 
concluding peace with Ukraine to-day, after all. This 
confirms me in my purpose of having it signed. Gratz 
has convened a meeting with Petersburgers for to-mor- 
row; this will clear matters up and show us whether 
any agreement is possible or if we must break off 
altogether. In any case, there can be no doubt that 
the intermezzo at Brest is rapidly nearing its end." 

After conclusion of peace with Ukraine, I received 
the following telegram from the Emperor: 

" Court train, February g, igi8. 

" Deeply moved and rejoiced to learn of the conclusion of peace 
with Ukraine. I thank you, dear Count Czernin, from my heart for 
your persevering and successful endeavors. 

*'You have thereby given me the happiest day of my hitherto 
far from happy reign, and I pray God Almighty that He may further 
continue to aid you on your difficult path — to the benefit of the 
Monarchy and of our peoples. Karl. 

''February ii, igiS. — Trotzky declines to sign. The 
war is over, but there is no peace. 

''The disastrous effects of the troubles in Vienna 
will be seen clearly from the following message from 
Herr von Skrzynski, dated Montreux, February 12, 
1 9 18. Skrzynski writes: 


"'I learn from a reliable source that France has issued the fol- 
lowing notifications: We were already quite disposed to enter 
into discussion with Austria. Now we are asking ourselves whether 
Austria is still sound enough for the part it was intended to give 
her. One is afraid of basing an entire policy upon a state which 
is, perhaps, already threatened with the fate of Russia.' And 
Skrzynski adds: 'During the last few days I have heard as follows: 
It has been decided to wait for a while.'" 

Our position, then, during the negotiations with 
Petersburg was as follows: We could not induce Ger- 
many to resign the idea of Courland and Lithuania. We 
had not the physical force to do so. The pressure ex- 
erted by the supreme army command, on the one hand, 
and the shifty tactics of the Russians made this impos- 
sible. We had then to choose between leaving Ger- 
many to itself and signing a separate peace, or acting 
together with our three allies and finishing with a peace 
including the covert annexation of the Russian outer 

The former alternative involved the serious risk 
of making a breach in the Quadruple Alliance, where 
some dissension was already apparent. The Alliance 
could no longer stand such experiments. We were 
faced with the final military efforts now, and the unity 
of the allies must not in any case be further shaken. 
On the other hand, the danger that Wilson, the only 
statesman in the world ready to consider the idea of a 
peace on mutual understanding, might from the con- 
clusion of such a peace obtain an erroneous impression 
as to our intentions. I hoped then, and I was not 
deceived, that this eminently clever man would see 
through the situation and recognize that we were 
forced to act under pressure of circumstances. His 
speeches delivered to our address after the peace at 
Brest confirmed my anticipation. 

The peace with Ukraine was made under pressure of 


imminent famine. And it bears the characteristic 
marks of such a birth. That is true. But it is no less 
true that despite the fact of our having obtained far 
less from Ukraine than we had hoped, we should, 
without these suppHes, have been unable to carry on 
at all until the new harvest. Statistics show that 
during the spring and summer of 1918, 42,000 wagon- 
loads were received from the Ukraine. It would have 
been impossible to procure these supplies from any- 
where else. Millions of human beings were thus saved 
from death by starvation — and let those who sit in 
judgment on the peace terms bear this in mind. 

It is also beyond doubt that with the great stocks 
available in Ukraine, an incomparably greater quantity 
could have been brought into Austria if the collecting 
and transport apparatus had worked differently. 

The Secretary of State for Food Supplies has, at my 
request, in May, 1919, furnished me with the following 
statistical data for publication: 

Brief survey of the organization of corn imports from Ukraine 
(on terms of the Brest-Litovsk Peace) and the results of same: 

When, after great efforts, a suitable agreement had been arrived 
at with Germany as to the apportionment of the Ukrainian supplies, 
a mission was despatched to Kieff, in which not only government 
officials, but also the best qualified and most experienced experts 
which the government could procure were represented. 

Germany and Hungary had also sent experts, among them being 
persons with many years of experience in the Russian grain busi- 
ness, and had been in the employ of both German and Entente grain 
houses (as, for instance, the former representative of the leading 
French com merchants, the house of Louis Dreyfuss). 

The official mission arrived at Kieff by the middle of March, and 
commenced work at once. A comparatively short time sufficed to 
show that the work would present quite extraordinary difficulties. 

The Ukrainian government, which had declared at Brest-Litovsk 
that very great quantities, probably about one milHon tons, of 
surplus foodstuffs were ready for export, had in the mean time been 
replaced by another Ministry. The Cabinet then in power evinced 


no particular inclination, or at any rate no hurry, to fulfil obligations 
on this scale, but was more disposed to point out that it would be 
altogether impossible, for various reasons, to do so. 

Moreover, the Peace of Brest had provided for a regular exchange 
system, bartering load by load of one article against another. But 
neither Germany nor Austria-Hungary was even approximately in 
a position to furnish the goods (textiles especially were demanded) 
required in exchange. 

We had then to endeavor to obtain the supplies on credit, and 
the Ukrainian government agreed, after long and far from easy 
negotiations, to provide credit valuta (against vouchers for mark 
and krone in Berlin and Vienna). The arrangements for this were 
finally made, and the two Central Powers drew in all six hundred and 
forty-three million karbowanez. 

The Ruble Syndicate, however, which had been formed under 
the leadership of the principal banks in Berlin, Vienna and Budapest, 
was during the first few months only able to exert a very slight 
activity. Even the formation of this syndicate was a matter of 
great difficulty, and in particular a great deal of time was lost; and 
even then the apparatus proved very awkward to work with. Any- 
how, it had only procured comparatively small sums of rubles, so 
that the purchasing organization in Ukraine, especially at first, 
suffered from a chronic lack of means of payment. 

But, in any case, a better arrangement of the money question 
would only have improved matters in a few of the best suppHed 
districts, for the principal obstacle was simply the lack of supplies. 
The fact that Kieff and Odessa were themselves continually in 
danger of a food crisis is the best indication as to the state of 

In the Ukraine, the effects of four years of war, with the result- 
ing confusion, and of the destruction wrought by the Bolsheviks 
(November, 191 7, to March, 1918) were conspicuously apparent: 
cultivation and harvesting had suffered everywhere, but where 
supplies had existed they had been partly destroyed, partly carried 
off by the Bolsheviks on their way northward. Still, the harvest had 
given certain stocks available in the country, though these were not 
extensive, and the organization of a purchasing system was now 
commenced. The free buying in Ukraine which we and Germany 
had originally contemplated could not be carried out, in fact, since 
the Ukrainian government declared that it would itself set up this 
organization, and maintained this intention with the greatest stub- 
bornness. But the authority in the country had been destroyed by 
the Revolution, and then by the Bolshevist invasion; the peasantry 


turned Radical, and the estates were occupied by revolutionaries 
and cut up. The power of the government, then, in respect of 
collecting supplies of grain, was altogether inadequate; on the 
other hand, however, it was still sufficient (as some actual instances 
proved) to place serious, indeed insuperable, obstacles in our way. 
It was necessary, therefore, to co-operate with the government — 
that is, to come to a compromise with it. After weeks of negotia- 
tion this was at last achieved, by strong diplomatic pressure, and, 
accordingly, the agreement of April 23, 191 8, was signed. 

This provided for the establishment of a German-Austro-Hun- 
garian Economical Central Commission; practically speaking, a 
great firm of corn merchants, in which the Central Powers appointed 
a number of their most experienced men, familiar, through years of 
activity in the business, with Russian grain affairs. 

But while this establishment was still in progress the people in 
Vienna (influenced by the occurrences on the Emperor's journey 
to North Bohemia) had lost patience; military leaders thought it no 
longer advisable to continue watching the operations of a civil 
commercial undertaking in Ukraine while that country was occupied 
by the military, and so finally the General Staff elicited a decree from 
the Emperor providing that the procuring of grain should be 
intrusted to Austro-Hungarian army units in the districts occupied 
by them. To carry out this plan a general, who had up to that 
time been occupied in Rumania, was despatched to Odessa and 
now commenced independent military proceedings from there. For 
payment kronen were used, drawn from Vienna. The War Grain 
Transactions department was empowered, by Imperial instructions 
to the government, to place one hundred million kronen at the 
disposal of the War Ministry, and this amount was actually set 
aside by the finance section of that department. 

This mihtary action and its execution very seriously affected the 
civil action during its establishment, and also greatly impaired the 
value of our credit in the Ukraine by offering kronen notes to such 
an extent at the time. Moreover, the kronen notes thus set in cir- 
culation in Ukraine were smuggled into Sweden, and coming thus 
into the Scandinavian and Dutch markets undoubtedly contributed 
to the well-known fall in the value of the krone which took place 
there some months later. 

The Austro-Hungarian military action was received with great 
disapproval by the Germans, and when in a time of the greatest 
scarcity among ourselves (mid-May) we were obliged to ask Ger- 
many for temporary assistance, this was granted only on condition 
that independent military action on the part of Austria-Hungary 


should be suppressed and the whole leadership in Ukraine be 
intrusted to Germany. 

It was then hoped that increased supplies might be procured, 
especially from Bessarabia, where the Germans have established 
a collecting organization, to the demand of which the Rumanian 
government had agreed. This hope, however, also proved vain, 
and in June and July the Ukraine was still further engaged. The 
country was, in fact, almost devoid of any considerable supplies, and 
in addition to this the collecting system never really worked prop- 
erly at all, as the arrangement for maximum prices was frequently 
upset by overbidding on the part of our own military section. 

Meantime everything had been made ready for getting in the 
harvest of 1918. The collecting organization had become more 
firmly established and extended, the necessary personal requirements 
were fully complied with, and it would doubtless have been possible to 
bring great quantities out of the country. But first of all the demands 
of the Ukrainian cities had to be met, and there was in many cases 
a state of real famine there; then came the Ukrainian and finally 
the very considerable contingents of German and Austro-Hungarian 
armies of occupation. Not until supplies for these groups had been 
assured would the Ukrainian government allow any export of grain, 
and to this we were forced to agree. 

It was at once evident that the degree of cultivation throughout 
the whole country had seriously declined — owing to the entire 
uncertainty of property and rights after the agrarian revolution. 
The local authorities, affected by this state of things, were little 
incHned to agree to export, and it actually came to local embargoes, 
one district prohibiting the transfer of its stocks to any other, 
exactly as we had experienced with ourselves. 

In particular, however, the agitation of the Entente agents (which 
had been frequently perceptible before), under the impression of the 
German military defeats, was most seriously felt. The position of 
the government which the Germans had set up at Kieff was unusu- 
ally weak. Moreover, the ever-active Bolshevik elements through- 
out the whole country were now working with increasing success 
against our organization. All this rendered the work more difficult 
in September and October — and then came the collapse. 

The difficulties of transport, too, were enormous; supplies had 
either to be sent to the Black Sea, across it and up the Danube, 
or straight through Galicia. For this we often lacked sufficient 
wagons, and in the Ukraine also coal; there were, in addition, often 
instances of resistance on the part of the local railways, incited by 
the Bolsheviks, and much more of the same sort. 


However great the lack of supplies in Ukraine itself, however 
much the limitations of our Russian means of payment may have 
contributed to the fact that the hopes entertained on the signing of 
peace at Brest-Litovsk were far from being reaUzed, we may never- 
theless maintain that all that was humanly possible was done to over- 
come the unprecedented difficulties encountered. And in particu- 
lar, by calling in the aid of the most capable and experienced firms of 
grain merchants, the forces available were utilized to the utmost 

Finally it should perhaps be pointed out that the import organiza- 
tion — apart from the before-mentioned interference of the military 
department and consequent fluctuations of the system — was largely 
upset by very extensive smuggling operations, carried on more 
particularly from Galicia. As such smuggling avoided the high 
export duty, the maximum prices appointed by the Ukrainian 
government were constantly being overbid. This smuggHng was 
also in many cases assisted by elements from Vienna; altogether 
the nervousness prevailing in many leading circles in Vienna, and 
frequently criticizing our own organization in public, or upsetting 
arrangements before they could come into operation, did a great 
deal of damage. It should also be mentioned that Germany like- 
wise carried on a great deal of unofficially assisted smuggling, with 
ill effects on the official import organization, and led to similar 
conditions on our own side. 

Despite all obstacles, the machinery established, as will be seen 
from the following survey, nevertheless succeeded in getting not 
inconsiderable quantities of foodstuffs into the states concerned, 
amounting in all to about forty-two thousand wagons, though, 
unfortunately, the quantities delivered did not come up to the 
original expectations. 


I. Foodstuffs obtained by the War Grain Transactions Depart- 
ment (corn, cereal products, leguminous fruits, fodder, seeds): 

Total imported for the contracting states (Germany, 

Austria-Hungary, Bulgaria, and Turkey) ii3j42i tons 

Of which Austria-Hungary received 57>382 " 

Grain and flour amounting to 46,225 " 

n. Articles obtained by the Austrian Central Purchasing Com- 



Of Which Austria- 
Total Hungary Received: 

Butter, fat, bacon 3,329,403 kg. 2,170,437 kg. 

Oil, edible oils 1,802,847 " 977,105 

Cheese, curds 420,818 " 325,103 

Fish, preserved fish, her- 
rings 1,213,961 " 473,561 " 

Cattle 105,542 head 55,421 head 

(36,834,885 kg.) (19,505,760 kg.) 

Horses 98,976 head 40,027 head 

(31,625,172 kg.) (13,165,725 kg.) 

Salted meat 2,927,439 " 1,571,569 " 

Eggs 75,200 boxes 32,433 boxes 

Sugar 66,809,969 kg. 24,973,443 kg. 

Various foodstuffs 27,385,095 " 7,836,287 '* 

Total 172,349,556 kg. 61,528,220 kg. 

and 75,200 boxes and 32,433 boxes 
eggs eggs 

(Total, 30,757 wagons) (Total, 13,037 wagons) 

The goods imported under II represent a value of roughly 450 
million kronen. 

The quantities smuggled unofficially into the states concerned are 
estimated at about 15,000 wagons (about half the official imports). 

So ended this phase, a phase which seemed important 
while we were Hving through it, but which was yet 
nothing but a phase of no great importance, after all, 
since it produced no lasting effect. 

The waves of war have passed over the Peace of Brest- 
Litovsk, washing it away as completely as a castle of 
sand on the shore is destroyed by the incoming tide. 

Long after I was reproached by the Polish element in 
the Herrenhaus, who asserted that I had proved my 
incapability by my own confession that the Peace of 
Brest had not withstood the ^test of subsequent events. 
But should I have shown more capability by asserting, 
after the collapse of the Central Powers^ that the peace 
still existed ? 


The term "bread peace" {Brotjrieden) was not coined 
by me, but by Burgemeister Weisskirchner on the 
occasion of my reception by the Gemeinderat of Vienna 
at the Nordbahnhof. The milHons whose Hves were 
saved by those 42,000 wagon-loads of food may repeat 
the words without a sneer. 



AT Brest - Litovsk the news began already to be 
^ spread that Rumania did not intend to continue 
the war. This news assumed a very definite character 
after the peace concluded with the Ukraine. That 
peace, as well as Trotzky's attitude, left no doubt in 
Bukharest that Rumania could no longer reckon on 
further co-operation on the part of Russia and gave 
rise to the idea in some circles that she would turn back. 
I say in some circles, for there was one group which, to 
the very last moment, was all for war. 

While at Brest-Litovsk I began to get into touch 
with the leaders of the Hungarian Parliament in order 
to come to an agreement on the peace aims relating to 
Rumania. It was evident that, as regards Rumania, 
a peace without annexations would be more difficult 
to bring about than with any other state, because the 
treacherous attack by the Rumanians on the whole 
of Hungary had raised the desire for a better strategical 
frontier. As might be expected, I met with violent 
opposition from Hungary, where, under the name of 
strategical frontier rectifications, as a matter of fact, 
greater annexations were desired. The first person 
with whom I dealt was Stephen Tisza, who, at great 
trouble, was brought to modify his original standpoint 
and finally was led so far as to admit that the funda- 
mental ideas for peace were capable of acceptance. 


On February 27, 19 18, he handed me a pro-memoria 
with the request to show it to the Emperor, in which 
he explained his aheady more conciHatory point of 
view, though, nevertheless, he very distinctly showed 
his disapproval of my intentions. The pro-memoria 
reads as follows : 

Unfortunately, Rumania can withdraw from the war not as much 
exhausted as justice and the justified interests of the Monarchy 
could wish. 

The loss of the Dobrudsha will be made good by territorial gains 
in Bessarabia, while the frontier rectifications demanded by us are 
out of all proportion with Rumania's guilt and with her military 

Our peace terms are so mild that they are as a generous gift 
offered to vanquished Rumania and are not at all to be made a 
subject for negotiations. In no case are these negotiations to assume 
the character of trading or bargaining. If Rumania refuses to 
conclude peace on the basis laid down by us our answer can only be 
a resumption of hostilities. 

I consider it highly probable that the Rumanian government 
will rim that risk to prove her necessity in the eyes of the Western 
Powers and her own population. But it is just as probable that 
after breaking off negotiations she will just as quickly turn back 
and give way before our superior forces. 

At the worst a short campaign would result in the total collapse 
of Rumania. 

In all human probability it is almost certain that the development 
of affairs will take a course similar to the last phase in the peace 
with northern Russia, and will lead to an easy and complete success 
for the Central Powers. That we lay down the frontier rectification 
as co7iditio sine qua non forms a justifiable measure to protect an 
important interest for the Monarchy of a purely defensive nature. 
It is energetically demanded by the entire patriotic public opinion of 
Himgary. It appears out of the question that a Minister of Foreign 
Affairs, had he taken up another attitude in the matter, would have 
been able to remain in the Delegation. 

And, besides, the procedure — to which the greatest importance 
must be attached — is absolutely necessary in order to compromise 
the chances of a general peace. 

It is obvious from the pubHc statements of leading statesmen of 
the Western Powers that they will not be prevailed upon to agree to 


an acceptable peace, as they do not believe in our capacity and firm 
resolve to carry it out. Whatever confirms their views in this 
respect widens the distance between us and peace; the only way 
to bring us really nearer to peace is to adopt an attitude that will 
lead them to think differently. 

This must constitute the line of action in our resolves and imder- 
takings. In connection with the Rimianian peace, it is evident that 
to yield on the frontier question — even for fear of a breakdown in 
the negotiations — must have a deplorable effect on the opinion our 
enemies have of us. It would certainly be right not to take advan- 
tage of Rumania's desperate situation, but to grant her reasonable 
peace terms in accordance with the principles embodied in our 
statements. But if we do not act with adequate firmness on that 
reasonable basis we shall encourage the Western Powers in the 
belief that it is not necessary to conclude a peace with us on the 
basis of the integrity of our territory and sovereignty, and fierce 
and bitter fighting may be looked for to teach them otherwise. 


February 27, igi8. 

Andrassy and Wekerle were also opposed to a milder 
treatment of Rumania, and thus the whole Hungarian 
Parliament were of one accord on the question. I am 
not sure what standpoint Karolyi held, and I do not 
know if at that period the ''tiger soul" which he at 
one time displayed to Rumania, or the pacifist soul 
which he laid later at the feet of General Franchet 
d'Esperey, dominated. 

Thus at Brest-Litovsk, when the Rumanian peace 
appeared on the horizon, I took up the standpoint 
that the party desirous of peace negotiations must be 

The episode of the Rumanian peace must not be 
taken out of the great picture of the war. Like the 
Peace of Brest-Litovsk, the Rumanian peace was neces- 
sary from a military point of view, because it seemed 
desirable to release troops in the east as quickly as 
possible and transfer them to the western front. It 
was urgently desired and repeatedly demanded that 


we should come to a final settlement with Rumania 
as soon as possible. In order to secure a speedy result 
I had already, from Brest-Litovsk, advised the Em- 
peror to send word privately to King Ferdinand that 
he could reckon on an honorable peace should he wish 
to enter into negotiations. The Emperor took my 
advice, and Colonel Randa had one or two interviews 
with a gentleman sent from the immediate entourage 
of the King. But the German opinion was that King 
Ferdinand must be ** punished for his treachery" and 
no negotiations entered into with him. For this reason, 
and to avoid fruitless controversy, I first imparted to 
Herr von Kiihlmann the accomplished fact and informed 
him that we had put ourselves secretly into communi- 
cation with King Ferdinand. This event was quite 
in accordance with the standard of equality in our 
Federation, by which every member was privileged 
to act according to the best of his ability and was 
merely bound to inform the friendly Powers of the 
proceedings. It was not our duty to apply to Germany 
for permission to take such a step. 

There was a threefold reason why I did not share 
Germany's opinion in this question. In the first place, 
my point of view was that it was not our duty to mete 
out divine justice and to inflict the punishment, but, 
on the contrary, to end the war as quickly as possible. 
Therefore my duty was to seize every means possible 
to prevent a continuation of the war. I must mention 
here that the idea prevailing in many circles that the 
Rumanians were quite at the end of their strength, 
and were compelled to accept all the conditions, is 
entirely false. The Rumanians held very strong posi- 
tions, the morale in the army was excellent, and in the 
last great attack on Maracesci Mackensen's troops 
had suffered very severely. This success turned the 
Rumanians' heads, and there were many leading men 


in the ranks of the Rumanian army who sided entirely 
with those who wished to carry on the war d Voutrance. 
They did not count so much on an actual victory, 
but were upheld by the hope that for some time to 
come they could maintain the defensive and that, 
meanwhile, the decisive successes of their allies on the 
west would also bring victory for them. They were 
probably afraid, too, that a peace concluded with us 
would place them into permanent disgrace with the 
Entente — that they would lose the friendship of the 
Entente, fail to gain ours, and find themselves between 
two stools. The second reason which decided me to 
insist on negotiating with the King was that, from a 
dynastic point of view, I considered it most unwise 
to dethrone a foreign king. There was already then a 
certain fall in the value of kings on the European 
market, and I was afraid it might develop into a panic 
if we put more kings on the market. The third reason 
was that, in order to conclude peace, we must have a 
competent representative in Rumania. If we were to 
depose the King we should divide Rumania into two 
camps and would, at the best, only be able to conclude 
an illegitimate peace with that party which accepted 
the dethronement of the King. A rapid and properly 
secured peace could only be concluded with the^ legit- 
imate head in Rumania. 

In the introductory interviews which Colonel Randa 
had on February 4th and 5th with the confidential en- 
voy from the King of Rumania, the envoy asked whether 
all the Quadruple Alliance Powers were acting in the 
step in question, and whether the occupied territory in 
Rumania would be released. I was notified of this 
inquiry of the King, and replied that I was persuaded 
that no refusal need be expected from the other Central 
Powers should he, with the object of securing an 
honorable peace, address them accordingly. As to the 


question of territorial possessions, I stated that, for the 
present, I was not able to express any opinion on the 
matter, as it would have to be a subject for the intro- 
ductory negotiations. 

The view held by the German military leaders in 
agreement with Hungarian politicians that Rumania 
should be treated differently from, and in a much 
sterner manner than, any other state was, if the ques- 
tion is considered from the point of view of retribution, 
quite justified. Rumania's actions with regard to us 
were far more treacherous than those with Italy. 
Italy, owing to her geographical position and to the 
fact of her being totally dependent on the Western 
Powers — a blockade by whom might finally have 
forced her to submit to their demands — would have 
found it very difficult to remain neutral in this world 
war. Rumania was not only perfectly independent, 
but was amply provided for through her rich granaries. 
Apart from the fact that Rumania alone was to blame 
for allowing things to go so far that Russia was en- 
abled finally to send her an ultimatum and so force 
her into war, it must be admitted that Rumania was 
far less likely to be influenced by the Entente than 
Italy. But neither would the Russian ultimatum 
have taken effect if Rumania had not consciously and 
willingly placed herself in a position in regard to mili- 
tary and political matters that gave her into Russia's 
power. Bratianu said to me in one of our last inter- 
views: "Russia is exactly like a black cock dancing 
before the hens." In admitting the truth of this 
appropriate comparison, it must be added that the 
female of the simile, longing to be embraced, directly 
provoked violence. 

For two years Bratianu had stirred up public opinion 
against us in his own country. Had he not done so, 
and had he not finally bared his Russian frontier of all 


troops, the Russian ultimatum would have had no 

In Rumania the Avarescu Ministry was in power. 
On February 24th Kiihlmann and I had our first inter- 
view alone with Avarescu at the castle of Prince Stirbey, 
at Buftia. At this interview, which was very short, 
the sole topic was the Dobrudsha question. The 
frontier rectifications, as they stood on the Austro- 
Hungarian program, were barely alluded to, and the 
economic questions, which later played a rather im- 
portant part, were only hinted at. Avarescu's stand- 
point was that the cession of the Dobrudsha was an 
impossibility, and the interview ended with a non pos- 
sumus from the Rumanian general, which was equiv- 
alent to breaking off negotiations. As regards the 
Dobrudsha question, our position was one of constraint. 
The so-called ''old" Dobrudsha, the portion that 
Rumania in 1913 had wrested from Bulgaria, had 
been promised to the Bulgarians by a treaty in the 
time of the Emperor Francis Joseph as a reward for their 
co-operation, and the area that lies between that 
frontier and the Constanza-Carnavoda railway line 
was vehemently demanded by the Bulgarians. They 
went much farther in their aspirations : they demanded 
the whole of the Dobrudsha, including the mouth of 
the Danube, and the great and numerous disputes that 
occurred later in this connection show how insistently 
and obstinately the Bulgarians held to their demands. 
At the same time, as there was a danger that the Bul- 
gars, thoroughly disappointed in their aspirations, 
might secede from us, it became absolutely impossible 
to hand over the Dobrudsha to the Rumanians. All 
that could be effected was to secure for the Rumanians 
free access to Constanza, and, further, to find a way 
out of the difficulty existing between Turkey and 
Bulgaria in connection with the Dobrudsha. 


In order not to break off entirely all discussion, I 
suggested to Avarescu that he should arrange for his 
King to meet me. My plan was to make it clear to 
the King that it would be possible for him now to 
conclude a peace, though involving certain losses, 
but still a peace that would enable him to keep his 
crown. On the other hand, by continuing the war he 
could not count on forbearance on the part of the Cen- 
tral Powers. I trusted that this move on my part 
would enable him to continue the peace negotiations. 
I met the King on February 27 th at a Httle station 
in the occupied district of Moldavia. 

We arrived at Foesani at noon and continued by 
motor to the lines, where Colonel Ressel and a few 
Rumanian ofhcers were waiting to receive me. We 
drove past positions on both sides in a powerful German 
car that had been placed at my disposal, and proceeded 
as far as the railway station of Padureni. A saloon car- 
riage in the train had been reserved for me there, and 
we set off for Rasaciuni, arriving there at five o'clock. 

The Rumanian royal train arrived a few minutes 
later, and I at once went across to the King. 

Incidentally my interview with King Ferdinand 
lasted twenty minutes. 

As the King did not begin the conversation, I had 
to do so, and said that I had not come to sue for peace 
but purely as the bearer of a message from the Emperor 
Charles, who, in spite of Rumania's treachery, would 
show indulgence and consideration if King Ferdinand 
would at once conclude peace under the conditions 
mutually agreed on by the Quadruple Alliance Powers. 
Should the King not consent, then a continuation of 
the war would be unavoidable and would put an end 
to Rumania and the dynasty. Our mihtary superiority 
was already very considerable, and now that our front 
would be set free from the Baltic to the Black Sea, 


it would be an easy matter for us, in a very short space 
of time, to increase our strength still more. We were 
aware that Rumania would very soon have no more 
munitions and, were hostilities to continue, in six weeks 
the kingdom and dynasty would have ceased to exist. 

The King did not oppose anything, but thought the 
conditions terribly hard. Without the Dobrudsha Ru- 
mania would hardly be able to draw her breath. At 
any rate, there could be further parley as to ceding 
' ' old ' ' Dobrudsha again. 

I said to the King that if he complained about hard 
conditions I could only ask what would his conditions 
have been if his troops had reached Budapest ? Mean- 
while I was ready to guarantee that Rumania would 
not be cut off from the sea, but would have free access 
to Constanza. 

Here the King again complained of the hard con- 
ditions enforced on him, and declared he would never 
be able to find a Ministry who would accept them. 

I rejoined that the forming of a Cabinet was Ru- 
mania's internal business, but my private opinion was 
that a Marghiloman Cabinet, in order to save Rumania, 
would agree to the conditions laid down. I could only 
repeat that no change could be made in the peace terms 
laid before the King by the Quadruple Alliance. If 
the King did not accept them, we should have, in a 
month's time, a far better peace than the one which 
the Rumanians might consider themselves lucky to 
get to-day. 

We were ready to give our diplomatic support to 
Rumania that she might obtain Bessarabia, and she 
would, therefore, gain far more than she would lose. 

The King repHed that Bessarabia was nothing to 
him, that it was steeped in Bolshevism, and the Do- 
brudsha could not be given up; anyhow, it was only 
under the very greatest pressure that he had decided 


to enter into the war against the Central Powers. He 
began again, however, to speak of the promised access 
to the sea, which apparently made the cession of the 
Dobrudsha somewhat easier. 

We then entered into details, and I reproached the 
King for the dreadful treatment of our people interned 
in Rumania, which he said he regretted. 

Finally I requested that he would give me a clear 
and decided answer within forty-eight hours as to 
whether he would negotiate on the basis of our proposals 

or not. 

The result of the interview was the appointment of 
the Marghiloman Ministry and the continuation of the 

Before Marghiloman consented to form a Cabinet, 
he approached me to learn the exact terms. 

He declared himself to be in agreement with the first 
and hardest of the conditions — the cession of the Do- 
brudsha, because he was quicker than the King in 
seeing that in consequence of our binding obligation 
to Bulgaria in this connection it could not be otherwise. 
As to our territorial demands, I told Marghiloman that 
I laid chief stress on entering into friendly and lasting 
relations with Rumania after peace was concluded, 
and, therefore, desired to reduce the demands in such 
measure as Rumania, on her part, would consider 
bearable. On the other hand, he, Marghiloman, must 
understand that I was bound to consider the Hungarian 
aspirations to a certain degree. Marghiloman, who 
was an old friend and tried parhamentarian, fully saw 
in what a constrained position I was placed. We 
finally agreed that the cession of the populated districts 
and towns like Turn-Saverin and Okna should not 
take place, and, altogether, the original claims were 
reduced to about the half. Marghiloman said he 
accepted the compromise. 


My desire to enter into a lasting economic union with 
Rumania played an important part in the negotiations. 
It was clear to me that this demand was in Austrian, 
but not in Hungarian interests; but I still think that, 
even so, it was my duty, although joint Minister for 
both countries, to work for Austria, as the shortage 
of provisions made the opening of the Rumanian 
granaries very desirable. As was to be expected, this 
clause in the negotiations met with the most violent 
opposition in Hungary, and it was at first impossible 
to see a way out of the difficulty. I never took back 
my demand, however, and was firmly resolved that 
peace should not be signed if my plan was not realized. 
I was dismissed from office in the middle of the negotia- 
tions, and my successor did not attach the same 
importance to that particular item as I did. 

On the German side there was at once evidence of 
that insatiable appetite which we had already noticed 
at Brest-Litovsk. The Germans wished to have a 
species of war indemnity by compelling Rumania to 
cede her petroleum springs, her railways and harbors, 
to German companies, and placing the permanent con- 
trol of her finances in German hands. I opposed these 
demands in the most decided manner from the very 
first, as I was convinced that such terms would preclude 
all possibility of any friendly relations in future. I 
went so far as to ask the Emperor Charles to telegraph 
direct to the Emperor William in that connection, which 
met with a certain amount of success. In the end the 
German claims were reduced by about 50 per cent., 
and accepted by Marghiloman in the milder form. 
With regard to the petroleum question, a ninety years* 
lease was agreed on. In the matter of the corn supply, 
Rumania was to bind herself to deliver her agricultural 
produce to the Central Powers for a certain number of 
years. The plan for Germany to be in the permanent 


control of Rumanian finances was not carried out. In 
the question of price, the Rumanian views held good. 
The most impossible of the German demands, namely, 
the occupation of Rumania for five to six years after 
the conclusion of peace, gave rise to great difficulties. 
This was the point that was most persistently and 
energetically insisted on by the German Supreme Mili- 
tary Command, and it was only with great trouble and 
after lengthy explanations and discussions that we 
settled the matter on the following lines: That on the 
conclusion of peace the entire legislative and executive 
power of the Rumanian government would be restored 
in principle, and that we should content ourselves with 
exercising a certain control through a limited number 
of agents, this control not to be continued after the 
general peace was made. I cannot say positively 
whether this standpoint was adhered to by my suc- 
cessor or not, but certain it is that Marghiloman only 
undertook office on condition that I give him a guaran- 
tee that the plan would be supported by me. 

As already mentioned, the question of the Dobrudsha 
had prepared great difficulties for us in two respects. 
First of all there was the relinquishing of their claim, 
which, for the Rumanians, was the hardest term of all 
and imparted to the peace the character of a peace of 
violence; and, secondly, the matter had precipitated a 
dispute between Turkey and Bulgaria. 

The Bulgarians' view was that the entire Dobrudsha, 
including the mouth of the Danube, must be promised 
to them, and they insisted on their point with an 
obstinacy which I have seldom, if ever, come across. 
They went so far as to declare that neither the present 
government nor any other would be able to return to 
Sofia, and allowed it clearly to be seen that by refusing 
their claims we could never again count on Bulgaria. 
The Turks, on the other hand, protested with equal 


vehemence that the Dobrudsha had been conquered 
by two Turkish army corps, that it was a moral injustice 
that the gains chiefly won by Turkish forces should be 
given exclusively to the Bulgarians, and that they 
would never consent to Bulgaria receiving the whole 
of the Dobrudsha unless compensation was given them. 
By way of compensation they asked not only for that 
stretch of land which they had ceded to Bulgaria on 
their entry into the war (Adrianople) , but also a con- 
siderable area beyond. 

In the numerous conferences at which the question 
was discussed, Kuhlmann and I played the part of 
honest mediators who were making every effort to 
reconcile the two so diverging standpoints. We both 
saw clearly that the falling off of the Bulgars or Turks 
might be the result if a compromise was not effected. 
Finally, after much trouble, we succeeded in drawing 
up a program acceptable to both sides. It took this 
form: that "old" Dobrudsha should at once be given 
back to Bulgaria, and the other parts of the area to be 
handed over as a possession to the combined Central 
Powers, and a definite decision agreed upon later. 

Neither Turkey nor Bulgaria was quite satisfied with 
the decision, nor yet averse to it; but, under the cir- 
cumstances, it was the only possible way of building a 
bridge between the Turks and the Bulgars. 

Just as England and France secured the entry into 
the war of Italy through the Treaty of London, so 
did the Emperor Francis Joseph and Burian, as well 
as the government in Berlin, give binding promises 
to the Bulgars to secure their co-operation, and these 
promises proved later to be the greatest obstacles to a 
peace of understanding. Nevertheless, no sensible 
person can deny that it is natural that a state engaged 
in a life-and-death struggle should seek an ally without 
first asking whether the keeping of a promise later will 


give rise to important or minor difficulties. The fire- 
man extinguishing flames in a burning house does not 
first ask whether the water he pumps on it has damaged 
anything. When Rumania attacked us in the rear 
the danger was very great, the house was in flames, 
and the first act of my predecessor was naturally, 
and properly, to avert the great danger. There was no 
lack of promises, and the Dobrudsha was assigned to the 
Bulgarians. Whether and in what degree the Turks 
had a right, through promises, to the territory they, 
on their part, had ceded to the Bulgars I do not know. 
But they certainly had a moral right to it. 

On the occasion of the Rumanian peace in the spring 
of 19 1 8, too severe a test of the loyalty of Bulgars and 
Turks to the Alliance was dangerous. For some time 
past the former had been dealing in secret with the 
Entente. The alliance with Turkey rested mainly on 
Talaat and Enver. Talaat told me in Bukharest, 
however, quite positively that he would be forced to 
send in his resignation if he were to return empty- 
handed, and in that case the secession of Turkey would 
be very probable. 

We tried then at Bukharest to steer our way through 
the many shoals ; not mortally to offend the Rumanians, 
to observe as far as possible the character of a peace of 
understanding, and yet to keep both Turks and Bul- 
gars on our side. 

The cession of the Dobrudsha was a terribly hard 
demand to make on the Rumanians, and was only 
rendered bearable for them when Kiihlmann and I, 
with the greatest difficulty and against the most violent 
opposition from the Bulgarians, obtained for them free 
access to the Black Sea. 

When, later, in one breath, we were reproached with 
having enforced a peace of violence on the Rumanians 
and with not having treated the Bulgarian claims and 


wishes with sufficient consideration — the answer to the 
charge is obvious. Because we were compelled to 
consider both Bulgaria and Turkey we were forced to 
demand the Dobrudsha from the Rumanians and 
treat them with greater severity than we should have 
done otherwise, in order finally to gain the Turks and 
the Bulgars for our negotiation plans. Judged accord- 
ing to the Versailles standard, the Peace of Bukharest 
would be a peace of understanding, as regards both 
form and contents. 

The Central Powers' mediators, both at Versailles 
and St. -Germain, would have been glad had they been 
treated in the same way as the Marghiloman Ministry 
w^as treated. 

The Rumanians lost the Dobrudsha, but acquired 
safe and guaranteed access to the sea; they lost a 
district of sparsely populated mountainous country to 
us, and through us they acquired Bessarabia. 

They gained far more than they lost. 



THE farther the World War progressed, the more 
did it lose the character of the work of individual 
men. It assumed rather the character of a cosmic 
event, taking more and more from the effectiveness of 
the most powerful individuals. 

All settlements on which coalitions were based were 
connected with certain war aims by the Cabinets, 
such as the promises of compensation given to their 
own people, the hopes of gain from the final victory. 
The encouragement of intense and boundless hatred, 
the increasing crude brutality of the world, all tended 
to create a situation making each individual like a small 
stone, which, breaking away from an avalanche of 
stones, hurls itself downward without a leader and 
without goal, and is no longer capable of being guided 
by any one. 

The Council of Four at Versailles tried for some time 
to make the world believe that they possessed the 
power to rebuild Europe according to their own ideas. 
According to their own ideas ! That signified, to begin 
with, four utterly different ideas, for four different 
worlds were comprised in Rome, Paris, London, and 
Washington. And the four representatives — "the Big 
Four," as they were called — were each individually 
the slave of his program, his pledges, and his people. 
Those responsible for the Paris negotiations in camera^ 


which lasted for many months, and were a breeding- 
ground for European anarchy, had their own good 
reasons for secrecy; there was no end to the disputes 
for which no outlet could be found. 

Here Wilson had been scoffed at and cursed because 
he deserted his program ; . certainly, there is not the 
slightest similarity between the Fourteen Points and 
the Peace of Versailles and St.-Germain, but it is for- 
gotten now that Wilson no longer had the power to 
enforce his will against the three others. We do not 
know what occurred behind those closed doors, but 
we can imagine it, and Wilson probably fought weeks 
and months for his program. He could have broken 
off proceedings and left ! He certainly could have done 
so, but would the chaos have been any less; would 
it have been any better for the world if the only one 
who was not solely imbued with the lust of conquest 
had thrown down his arms? But Clemenceau, too, 
the direct opposite of Wilson, was not quite open in his 
dealings. Undoubtedly this old man, who now at 
the close of his life was able to satisfy his hatred of the 
Germans of 1870, gloried in the triumph; but, apart 
from that, if he had tried to conclude a ''Wilson peace," 
all the private citizens of France, great and small, 
would have risen against him, for they had been told 
for the last five years, que les hoches payeront tout. 
What he did, he enjoyed doing; but he was forced to 
do it or France would have dismissed him. 

And Italy? From Milan to Naples is heard the 
subterraneous rumbHng of approaching revolution; 
the only means the government has adopted to check 
the upheaval is to drown the revolution in a sea of 
national interests. I believe that in 191 7, when the 
general discontent was much less and finances were 
much better, the Italian government might much more 
probably have accepted Wilson's standpoint than after 


final victory. Then they could not do it. At Versailles 
they were the slaves of their promises. And does any 
one believe that Lloyd George would have had the 
power at Versailles to extend the Wilson principle of 
the right of self-determination to Ireland and the 
Dominions? Naturally, he did not wish to do other- 
wise than he did; but that is not the question here, 
but rather that neither could have acted very differently 
even had he wished to do so. 

It seems to me that the historical moment is the 
year 191 7, when Wilson lost his power, which was 
swallowed up in imperiahsm, and when the President 
of the United States neglected to force his program 
on his allies. Then power was still in his hands, as the 
American troops were so eagerly looked for, but later, 
when victory came, he no longer held it. 

And thus there came about what is now a fact. A 
dictated peace of the most terrible nature was con- 
cluded and a foundation laid for a continuance of 
unimaginable disturbances, compHcations, and wars. 

In spite of all the apparent power of victorious armies, 
in spite of all the claims of the Council of Four, a world 
has expired at Versailles — the world of militarism. 
Solely bent on exterminating Prussian militarism, the 
Entente have gained so complete a victory that all 
fences and barriers have been pulled down and they 
can give themselves up unchecked to a torrent of 
violence, vengeance, and passion. And the Entente 
are so swallowed up by their revengeful paroxysm of 
destruction that they do not appear to see that, while 
they imagine they still rule and command, they are 
even now but instruments in a world revolution. 

The Entente, who would not allow the war to end 
and kept up the blockade for months after the cessation 
of hostilities, has made Bolshevism a danger to the 
world. War is its father, famine its mother, despair 


its godfather. The poison of Bolshevism will course in 
the veins of Europe for many a long year. 

Versailles is not the end of the war; it is only a phase 
of it. The war goes on, though in another form. I 
think that the coming generation will not call the great 
drama of the last five years the World War, but the 
World Revolution, which it will reahze began with the 
World War. 

Neither at Versailles nor at St. -Germain has any 
lasting work been done. The germs of decomposition 
and death lie in this peace. The paroxysms that 
shattered Europe are not yet over, as, after a terrible 
earthquake, the subterraneous rumblings may still be 
heard. Again and again we shall see the earth open, 
now here, now there, and shoot up flames into the 
heavens; again and again there will be expressions of 
elementary nature and elementary force that will spread 
devastation through the land — until everything has 
been swept away that reminds us of the madness of 
the war and the French peace. 

Slowly but with unspeakable suffering a new world 
will be born. Coming generations will look back to 
our times as to a long and very bad dream, but day 
follows the darkest night. Generations have been laid 
in their graves, murdered, famished, and a prey to dis- 
ease. MilHons, with hatred and murder in their hearts, 
have died in their efforts to devastate and destroy. 

But other generations will arise and with them a new 
spirit. They will rebuild what war and revolution have 
pulled down. Spring comes always after winter. Res- 
urrection follows after death ; it is the eternal law in life. 

Well for those who will be^ called upon to serve as 
soldiers in the ranks of whoever comes to build the 
new world. 

June, 1919. 




On February 28, 191 7, the Isvestia published the following text of 
this agreement: 

The Italian Ambassador in London, Marchese Imperiali, acting 
on the instructions of his government, has the honor to convey to 
the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Sir Edward Grey, the French Am- 
bassador in London, M. Cambon, and the Russian Ambassador in 
London, Count Benkendorff, the following notable points: 

§ I. A Military Convention shall be concluded without delay 
between the General Staffs of France, Great Britain, Russia, and 
Italy. This convention to determine the minimum of forces to be 
directed by Russia against Austria-Hungary in case that country 
should turn all its forces against Italy, provided Russia decides to 
concentrate chiefly against Germany. The Mihtary Convention 
referred to shall also settle questions bearing upon an armistice, in so 
far as these by their nature come within the scope of the Army 

§ 2. Italy on her part undertakes to carry on war with all the 
means at her disposal, together with France, Great Britain, and 
Russia, against all countries at war with them. 

§ 3. The naval forces of France and Great Britain are to render 
Italy undiminished, active assistance until the destruction oj the 
Austrian fleet, or until the moment peace is concluded. A Naval 
Convention shall be concluded without delay between France, Great 
Britain, and Italy. 

§ 4. At the coming conclusion of peace Italy is to receive: the 
district of the Trentino; the whole of South Tyrol as far as its natural 

1 Translated from the German text given by Count Czemin, no 
English text being available. 


geographical boundary, thereby understood the Brenner; the city 
and district of Trieste; the provinces of Goerz and Gradisca, the 
whole of I stria as far as Quamero, including Voloska and the Istrian 
islands of Cherso and Lussin, also the smaller islands of Plavnica, 
Unie, Canidolo, Palazzoli, as well as the island of St. Peter de 
Nembi, Astinello and Cruica, with the neighboring islands. 

Note: I. By way of supplement to § 4, the frontier shall be drawn 
through the following points: From the peak of the Umbrail in a 
northerly direction as far as the Stilfserjoch, and thence along the 
watershed of the Ratische Alps as far as the source of the rivers 
Etsch and Eisack, then over the Reschen-Scheideck, the Brenner 
and the Oetztaler and Zillertaler Alps; the frontier line then to turn 
southward, cutting the Toblach range, and proceeding as far as the 
present frontier of Grein, drawn toward the Alps; following this 
it will run to the heights of Tarvis, then, however, pursuing a course 
along the watershed of the Julian Alps; over the heights of Predil, 
Mangart, and Triglav group, and the passes of Podbrda, Podlanes- 
kan, and Idria. From there the frontier continues in a south- 
easterly direction to the Schneeberg, so that the basin of the River 
Save, with its sources, shall not fall within the Italian territory. 
From the Schneeberg the frontier proceeds toward the coast, inclos- 
ing Castua, Matughe, and Voloska in the Italian possessions. 

§ 5. Similarly, Italy is to receive the province of Dalmatia in its 
present form, including Lissarik and Trebinje in the north, and all 
possessions as far as a line drawn from the coast at Cape Blanca 
eastward to the watershed in the south, so as to include in the Italian 
possessions all valleys on the course of the rivers debouching at 
SebenicOjSuch as Cikola, Kerke, and Budisnica, with all those situate 
on their sources. Similarly also, Italy is promised all the islands 
lying north and west of the Dalmatian coast, beginning with the 
islands of Premuda, Selve, Ulbo, Skerda Maon, Pago, and Punta- 
dura, etc., in the north; as far as Malarda in the south, adding also 
the islands of St. Andrae, Busi, Lissa, Lessina, Torzola, Curzola, 
Cazza, and Lagosta, with all rocks and islets thereto pertaining, as 
well as Pelagosa, but not to include the islands of Great and Lesser 
Zirona, Pua, Solta, and Brazza. 

The following are to be neutralized: (i) The entire coast from 
Cape Blanca in the north as far as the southern end of the peninsula 
of Sabbioncello, and in the south including the whole of the men- 
tioned peninsula in the neutralized area; (2) a part of the coast 
beginning from a point situate ten versts south of the cape of Alt- 
Ragusa, as far as the River Vojusa in the south, so as to include 
within the boundaries of the neutralized zone the whole of the Bay 


of Cattaro with its ports, Antivari, Dulcigno, San Giovanni di Medua, 
and Durazzo; this not to affect the declarations of the contracting 
parties in April and May, 1909, as to the rights of Montenegro. 

In consideration, however, of the fact that these rights were only 
admitted as applying to the present possessions of Montenegro, they 
shall not be so extended as to embrace any lands or ports which 
may in the future be ceded to Montenegro. In the same way, no 
part of the coast at present belonging to Montenegro shall be subject 
to future neutralization. The restrictions in the case of the port of 
Antivari, agreed by Alontenegro itself in 1909, remain in force. 
(3) Finally, the islands not accorded to Italy. 

Note: 3. The following lands in the Adriatic Sea are accorded 
by the Powers of the Quadruple Alliance to the territories of Croatia, 
Serbia, and Montenegro: In the north of the Adriatic, the entire coast, 
commencing from the Bay of Volosca on the frontier of Istria as far 
as the northern frontier of Dalmatia, including the whole of the coast- 
line now belonging to Htmgary, the entire coast of Croatia, the port 
of Fiume and the small harbors of Novi and Carlopago, as also 
the islands of Velia, Pervicchio, Gregorio, Goli, and Arbe. In the 
south of the Adriatic, where Serbia and Austrian interests lie, the 
entire coast from Cape Blanca as far as the River Drina, with the 
principal ports of Spalato, Ragusa, Cattaro, Antivari, Dulcigno, a7id 
San Giovanni di Medua, and with the islands of Greater Zirona, Bua, 
Solta, Brazza, Jaklian, and Calamotta. 

The port of Durazzo can be accorded to an independent Moham- 
medan State of Albania. 

§ 6. Italy to be given full possession of Valona, the Island of 
Sasseno, and a sufficiently extensive territory to protect it in military 
respects, approximately from the River Vojusa in the north and east 
to the boimdary of the Chimara district in the south. 

§ 7. Italy, receiving the Trentino according to § 4, Dalmatia and 
the islands of the Adriatic according to § 5, as well as Valona, is not 
to oppose the possible wishes of France, Great Britain, and Russia 
in case of the establishment of a small autonomous neutraUzed state 
in Albania, as to division of the northern and southern frontier belts 
of Albania between Montenegro, Serbia, and Greece. The southern 
strip of coast from the frontier of the Italian district of Valona as 
far as Cape Stiloa to be subject to neutralization. 

Italy has the prospect of right to determine the foreign policy of 
Albania; in any case, Italy undertakes to assent to the cession of a 
siifficient territory to Albania to make the frontiers of the latter on 
the west of the Ochrida Lake coincide with the frontiers of Greece 
and Serbia. 



§ 8. Italy to have full possession of all the islaftds of the Dode- 
canessus which it occupies at present. 

§ 9. France, Great Britain, and Russia accept in principle the fact 
of Italy^s interest in maintaining political equilibrium in the Mediter- 
ranean, as also Italy's right, in case of any division oj Turkey, to a 
like portion with themselves in the basin of the Mediterranean, and 
that in the part adjacent to the province of Adalia, where Italy has 
already acquired particular rights and developed particular inter- 
ests, to be noted in the Italo-British Convention. The zone then 
falling to the possession of Italy will in due time be determined 
according to the vital interests of France and Great Britain. Simi- 
larly, the interests of Italy are also to be considered in case the 
territorial integrity of Asiatic Turkey should be maintained by the 
Powers for a further period, and only a limitation between the 
spheres of interest be made. Should, in such case, any areas of 
Asiatic Turkey be occupied by France, Great Britain, and Russia 
during the present war, then the entire area contiguous to Italy, 
and further defined below, shall be granted to Italy, together with 
the right to occupy the same. 

§ 10. In Lybia, Italy is to be granted all rights and claims hitherto 
conceded to the Sultan on the basis of the Treaty of Lausanne. 

§ II. Italy to receive such part of the war contribution as shall 
be commensurate with her sacrifices and efforts. 

§ 12. Italy subscribes to the declaration issued by France, Eng- 
land, and Russia whereby Arabia and the holy cities of the Moham- 
medans are to be granted to afi independent Mohammedan Power. 

§ 13. In case of any extension of the French and English colonial 
possessions in Africa at the expense of Germany, France and Great 
Britain acknowledge in principle the right of Italy to demand certain 
compensation in respect of extension of Italian possessions in Eritrea, 
Somaliland, in Lybia, and the colonial areas contiguous to the 
colonies of France and England. 

§ 14. England undertakes to facilitate the immediate realization 
of a loan of not less than fifty million pounds sterling in the English 
market on favorable conditions. 

§ 15. France, England, and Russia undertake to support Italy in 
preventing the representatives of the Holy See from taking any diplo- 
matic steps whatever in connection with the conclusion of a peace, 
or the regulation of questions connected with the present war. 

§ 16. The present treaty to be kept secret. As regards Italy's 
agreement to the declaration of September 5, 1914, this declaration 
will be made public as soon as war is declared by Italy or against 


The foregoing points having been duly noted, the respective 
authorized representatives of France, Great Britain, and Russia, 
together with the representative of Italy similarly authorized by his 
government for this purpose, are agreed: France, Great Britain, 
and Russia declare their full agreement with the foregoing notable 
points, as set before them by the ItaHan government. With regard 
to §§i, 2, and 3, referring to the agreement upon military and naval 
undertakings of all Four Powers, Italy undertakes to commence active 
operations at the earliest possible date, and in any case not later than 
one month after the signing of the present dociunent by the contract- 
ing parties. 

The present agreement, in four copies, signed in London on the 

26th April, 191 5, and sealed, by 

Sir Edward Grey, 

Marchese Imperiali, 
Graf Benkendorff. 

After the entry of Rumania into the war (September, 19 16) this 
program was further extended. 



MARCH 5, 191 7 

From the aide-mimoire of the American Ambassador in Vienna, 
dated February i8th of this year, the Imperial and Royal Ministry 
for Foreign Affairs understands that the Washington Cabinet enter- 
tains some doubt, in view of the statements issued by the Imperial 
and Royal government on February loth and January nth of this 
year, as to what attitude Austria-Hungary contemplates adopting 
for the future with regard to submarine warfare, and whether the 
assurance given by the Austrian government to the Washington 
Cabinet in the course of the proceedings with regard to the case of 
the vessels Ancona and Persia might not be taken as altered or 
withdrawn by the statements mentioned. 

The Austrian government is most willing to meet the desire of 
the United States government that this doubt should be removed 
by a clear and final declaration. 

It should here be permitted first of all to touch very briefly on 
the methods adopted by the Allied Powers in marine warfare, since 


these form the starting-point of the aggravated submarine warfare 
put into practice by Austria-Hungary and her alHes, besides throw- 
ing a clear Ught upon the attitude hitherto adopted by the Austrian 
government in the questions arising therefrom. 

When Great Britain entered upon the war with the Central 
Powers, but a few years had elapsed since the memorable time when 
Great Britain itself, together with the remaining states, had com- 
menced at The Hague to lay the foundations of a modern code of law 
for marine warfare. Shortly after that the English government had 
brought about a meeting of representatives of the principal naval 
Powers, assembling in London, in order further to carry forward 
the work commenced at The Hague, presumably in a spirit of 
reasonable compromise between the interests of belligerents and 
those of neutrals. The unexpected success of these endeavors, 
which aimed at nothing less than concerted establishment of legal 
standards calculated to maintain the freedom of the seas and the 
interests of neutrals even in time of war, was not to be long enjoyed 
by the peoples concerned. 

Hardly had the United Kingdom decided to take part in the war 
than it also began to break through the barriers with which it was 
confronted by the standards of international law. While the Cen- 
tral Powers immediately on the outbreak of war had announced their 
intention of observing the Declaration of London, which also bore 
the signature of the British representative, England discarded the 
most important points in that Declaration. In the endeavor to cut 
off the Central Powers from all supplies by sea, England gradually 
extended the list of contraband until it included everything now 
required by human beings for the maintenance of life. Great Brit- 
ain then placed all the coasts of the North Sea — an important 
transit-way also for the maritime trade of Austria-Hungary — under 
the obstruction of a so-called "blockade," in order to prevent the 
entry into Germany of all goods not yet inscribed on the contraband 
list, as also to bar all neutral traffic with these coasts, and prevent 
any export from the same. That this method of proceeding stands 
in the most lurid contradiction to the standards of blockade law 
arrived at and established by international congress has already 
been admitted by the President of the United States in words which 
will live in the history of the law of nations. By thus illegally pre- 
venting export of goods from the Central Powers Great Britain 
thought to be able to shut down the innumerable factories and 
industries which had been set up by industrious and highly 
developed peoples in the heart of Europe; and to bring the workers 
to idleness and thence to want and revolt. And when Austria- 


Hungary's southern neighbor joined the ranks of the enemies of the 
Central Powers her first step was to declare a blockade of all the 
coasts of her opponent — following the example, of course, of her 
allies — in disregard of the legal precepts which Italy had shortly 
before helped to lay down. Austria-Hungary did not fail to point to the neutral Powers at once that this blockade was void of all 
legal validity. 

For two years the Central Powers have hesitated. Not until 
then, and after long and mature consideration for and against, did 
they proceed to answer in like measure and close with their adver- 
saries at sea. As the only belligerents who had done everything 
to secure the observance of the agreement which should provide 
for freedom of the seas to neutrals, it was sorely against their wishes 
to bow to the need of the moment and attack that freedom; but 
they took that step in order to fulfil their urgent duty to their peo- 
ples and with the conviction that the step in question must lead 
toward the freedom of the seas in the end. The declarations made 
by the Central Powers on the last day of January of this year are 
only apparently directed against the rights of neutrals; as a matter 
of fact, they are working toward the restitution of those rights 
which the enemy has constantly infringed and would, if victorious, 
annihilate forever. The submarines, then, would circle round 
England's shores, announce to all peoples using and needing the 
sea — and who does not need it? — that the day is not far off when 
the flags of all nations shall wave over the seas in newly acquired 

It may doubtless be hoped that this announcement will find echo 
wherever neutral peoples live, and that it will be understood in par- 
ticular by the great people of the United States of America, whose 
most famous representative has in the course of the war spoken up 
with ardent words for the freedom of the seas as the highway of all 
nations. If the people and the government of the Union will bear in 
mind that the "blockade" established by Great Britain is intended 
not only to force the Central Powers to submission bystarvation, but 
ultimately to secure undisputed mastery of the sea for itself, and 
thereby insure its supremacy over all other nations, while on the 
other hand the blockading of England and its allies only serves to 
render possible a peace with honor for these Powers and to guarantee 
to all peoples the freedom of navigation and maritim.e trade, 
thus insuring their safe existence, then the question as to which 
of the two belligerent parties has right on its side is already decided. 
Though the Central Powers are far from wishing to seek for further 
allies in their struggle, they nevertheless feel justified in claiming 


that neutrals should appreciate their endeavors to bring to life 
again the principles of international law and the equal rights of 

Proceeding now to answer the questions set forth in the memo- 
randum of February i8th of this year, already referred to, the Aus- 
trian government would first of all remark that in the exchange of 
notes in the cases of the A ncona and Persia this government restricted 
itself to consideration of the concrete questions which had up to then 
arisen, without setting forth the legal position in point of principle. 
In the note of December 29, 1915, however, regarding the Ancona 
case it reserved the right to bring up the intricate questions of inter- 
national law connected with the submarine warfare for discussion at 
a later date. In reverting now to this point, and taking up the 
question as to sinking of enemy ships, with which the memorandum 
is concerned, for brief consideration, it is with the hope that it may 
be made clear to the American government that the Austrian 
government now as heretofore holds unmovahly by the assurance 
already given, and with the endeavor to avoid any misunderstanding 
between the Monarchy and the American Union by clearing up the 
most important question arising out of the submarine warfare — most 
important as it rests on the dictates of humanity. 

First and foremost the Austrian government wishes to point out 
that the thesis advanced by the American government and adopted 
in many learned works — to the effect that enemy merchant- vessels, 
save in event of attempted flight or resistance, should not be 
destroyed without provision for the safety of those on board — is also, 
in the opinion of the Austrian government itself, the kernel, so to 
speak, of the whole matter. Regarded from a higher point of view, 
this theory can at any rate be considered in connection with possible 
circumstances, and its application be more closely defined; from the 
dictates of humanity, which the Austrian government and the Wash- 
ington Cabinet have equally adopted as their guide, we can lay down 
the general principle that, in exercising the right to destroy enemy 
merchant shipping, loss of life should be avoided as far as possible. 
This necessitates a warning on the part of the belligerent before 
exercising the right of destruction. And he can here adopt the 
method indicated by the theory of the Union government referred to, 
according to which the commander of the war-ship himself issues a 
warning to the vessel about to be sunk, so that crew and passengers 
can be brought into safety at the last moment ; or, on the other hand, 
the government of the belligerent state can, when it is considered an 
imperative necessity of war, give warning, with complete effect, 
before the sailing of the vessel to be sunk; or, finally, such govern- 


ment can, when preparing comprehensive measures against the 
enemy traffic at sea, have recourse to a general warning applicable 
to all enemy vessels concerned. 

That the principle as to providing for the safety of persons on 
board is Hable to exceptions has been admitted by the Union govern- 
ment itself. The Austrian government believes, however, that 
destruction without warning is not only justifiable in cases of 
attempted escape or resistance. It would seem, to take one instance 
only, that the character of the vessel itself should be taken into 
consideration; thus merchant-ships or other private craft, placed in 
the service of war operations, whether as transports or guard-ships, 
or with a military crew or weapons on board for the purpose of any 
kind of hostilities, should doubtless, according to general law, be 
liable to destruction without notice. The Austrian government need 
not go into the question of how far a belligerent is released from any 
obligation as to provision for safety of human life when his oppo- 
nent sinks enemy merchant- vessels without such previous warning, 
as in the well-known cases, previously referred to, of the Elektray 
Duhrovnik, Zagreb, etc., since, in this respect, despite its evident 
right, the Austrian government itself has never returned like for 
like. Throughout the entire course of the war Austro-Hungarian 
war-ships have not destroyed a single enemy merchant- vessel without 
previous warning, though this may have been of a general character. 

The theory of the Union government, frequently referred to, also 
admits of several interpretations; the question arises, for instance, 
whether, as has frequently been maintained, only armed resistance 
can be held to justify destruction of ship and persons on board, or 
whether the same applies to resistance of another sort, as, for 
example, when the crew purposely refrain from getting the pas- 
sengers into the boats (the case of the Ancona), or when the pas- 
sengers themselves decline to enter the boats. In the opinion of 
the Austrian government cases such as those last should also justify 
destruction of the vessel without responsibility for the lives of those 
on board, as otherwise it would be in the power of any one on the 
vessel to deprive the belligerent of his right to sink the ship. For the 
rest it should also be borne in mind that there is no unanimity of 
opinion really as to when the destruction of enemy merchant ton- 
nage is justifiable at all. 

The obligation as to issuing a warning immediately before sinking 
a vessel will, in the view of the Austrian government, on the one 
hand, involve hardships otherwise avoidable, while, on the other, it 
may in certain circumstances be calculated to prejudice the rightful 
interests of the belligerent. In the first place, it cannot be denied 


that saving lives at sea is nearly always a matter of blind uncertainty, 
since the only alternatives are to leave them on board a vessel 
exposed to the operations of the enemy, or to take them off in small 
boats to face the dangers of the elements. It is, therefore, far more 
in accordance with the dictates of humanity to restrain people from 
venturing upon vessels thus ettdangered by warning them beforehand. 
For the rest, however, the Austrian government is not convinced, 
despite careful consideration of all legal questions concerned, 
that the subjects of neutral countries have any claim to immunity 
when traveling on board enemy ships. 

The principle that neutrals shall also in time of war enjoy the 
freedom of the seas extends only to neutral vessels, not to neutral 
persons on board enemy ships, since the belligerents are admittedly 
justified in hampering enemy traffic at sea as far as lies in their 
power. Granted the necessary military power, they can, if deemed 
necessary to their ends, forbid enemy merchant-vessels to sail the 
sea, on pain of instant destruction, as long as they make their 
purpose known beforehand so that all, whether enemy or neutral, 
are enabled to avoid risking their lives. But even where there is 
doubt as to the justification of such proceeding, and possible 
reprisals threatened by the opposing side, the question would remain 
one to be decided between the belligerents themselves alone, they 
being admittedly allowed the right of making the high seas a field 
for their military operations, of suppressing any interruption of 
such operations and supremely determining what measures are to 
be taken against enemy ships. The neutrals have in such case 
no legitimate claims beyond that of demanding that due notice be 
given them of measures contemplated against the enemy, in order 
that they may refrain from intrusting their persons or goods to 
enemy vessels. 

The Austrian government may presumably take it for granted 
that the Washington Cabinet agrees with the foregoing views, which 
the Austrian government is fully convinced are altogether unassail- 
able. To deny the correctness of these views would imply — and this 
the Union government can hardly intend — that neutrals have the 
right of interfering in the military operations of the belligerents; 
indeed, ultimately to constitute themselves the judges as to what 
methods may or may not be employed against an enemy. It would 
also seem a crying injustice for a neutral government, in order 
merely to secure for its subjects the right of passage on enemy ships 
when they might just as well, or indeed with far greater safety, 
travel by neutral vessels, to grasp at the arm of a belligerent Power, 
fighting perhaps for its very existence. Not to mention the fact 


that it would open the way for all kinds of abuses if a belligerent 
were forced to lay down arms at the bidding of any neutral whom 
it might please to make use of enemy ships for business or pleasure. 
No doubt has ever been raised as to the fact that subjects of neutral 
states are themselves responsible for any harm they may incur by 
their presence in any territory on land where military operations are 
in progress. Obviously, there is no ground for establishing another 
standard for naval warfare, particularly since the second Peace Con- 
ference expressed the wish that, pending the agreement of rules for 
naval warfare, the rules observed in warfare upon land should be 
applied as far as possible at sea. 

From the foregoing it appears that the rule as to warning being 
given to the vessel itself before such vessel is sunk is subject to 
exceptions of various kinds under certain circumstances, as, for 
instance, the cases cited by the Union government of flight and 
resistance, the vessel may be sunk without any warning; in others 
warning should be given before the vessel sails. The Austrian 
government may then assert that it is essentially in agreement with 
the Union government as to the protection of neutrals against risk 
of life, whatever may be the attitude of the Washington Cabinet 
toward some of the separate questions here raised. The Austrian 
government has not only put into practice throughout the war the 
views it holds in this respect, but has gone even farther, regulating 
its actions with the strictest care according to the theory advanced 
by the Washington Cabinet, although its assurance as published only 
stated that it was ''essentially in agreement" with the Union govern- 
ment's views. The Austrian government would be extremely satis- 
fied if the Washington Cabinet should be inclined to assist it in its 
endeavors, which are inspired by the warmest feelings of humanity, 
to save American citizens from risk at sea by instructing and warning 
its subjects in this direction. 

Then, as regards the circular verbal note of February loth of this 
year concerning the treatment of armed enemy merchant- vessels, the 
Austrian government must in any case declare itself to be, as 
indicated in the foregoing, of the opinion that the arming of trading- 
ships, even when only for the purpose of avoiding capture, is not 
justified in modem international law. The rules provide that a 
war-ship is to approach an enemy merchant- vessel in a peaceable 
manner; it is required to stop the vessel by means of certain signals, 
to interview the captain, examine the ship's papers, enter the par- 
ticulars in due form, and, where necessary, make an inventory, etc. 
But in order to comply with these requirements it must obviously 
be understood that the war-ship has full assurance that the merchant- 


vessel will likewise observe a peaceable demeanor throughout. And 
it is clear that no such assurance can exist when the merchant-ves- 
sel is so armed as to be capable of offering resistance to a war-ship. 
A war-ship can hardly be expected to act in such a manner under the 
guns of an enemy, whatever may be the purpose for which the guns 
were placed on board. Not to speak of the fact that the merchant- 
vessels of the Entente Powers, despite all assurances to the con- 
trary, have been proved to be armed for offensive purposes, and 
make use of their armament for such purposes. It would also be 
to disregard the rights of humanity if the crew of a war-ship were 
expected to surrender to the guns of an enemy without resistance 
on their own part. No state can regard its duty to humanity as 
less valid in respect of men defending their country than in respect 
of the subjects of a foreign Power. 

The Austrian government is therefore of opinion that its former 
assurance to the Washington Cabinet could not be held to apply to 
armed merchant-vessels, since these, according to the legal standards 
prevailing, whereby hostilities are restricted to organized mihtary 
forces, must be regarded as privateers (freebooters) which are liable 
to immediate destruction. History shows us that, according to the 
general law of nations, merchant-vessels have never been justified in 
resisting the exercise by war-ships of the right of taking prizes. But 
even if a standard to this effect could be shown to exist, it would 
not mean that the vessels had the right to provide themselves with 
guns. It should also be borne in mind that the arming of merchant- 
ships must necessarily alter the whole conduct of warfare at sea, and 
that such alteration cannot correspond to the views of those who 
seek to regulate maritime warfare according to the principles of 
humanity. As a matter of fact, since the practice of privateering 
was discontinued, until a few years back, no Power has ever thought 
of arming merchant-vessels. Throughout the whole proceedings of 
the second Peace Conference, which was occupied with all questions 
of the laws of warfare at sea, not a single word was ever said about 
the arming of merchant-ships. Only on one occasion was a casual 
observation made with any bearing on this question, and it is 
characteristic that it should have been by a British naval officer of 
superior rank, who impartially declared: "Lorsqu'un navire de 
guerre se propose d'arreter et de visiter un vaisseau marchand, le 
commandant, avant de mettre une embarcation k la mer, fera tirer 
im coup de canon. Le coup de canon est la meilleure garantie que 
Ton puisse donner. Les navir de commerce n^ont pas de canons d 
hordy ("When a war-ship intends to stop and board a merchant- 
vessel the commander, before sending a boat, will fire a gun. The 


firing of a gun is the best guarantee that can be given. Merchant- 
vessels do not carry gims.'") 

Nevertheless, Austria-Hungary has in this regard also held by- 
its assurance; in the circular verbal note referred to neutrals were 
cautioned beforehand against intrusting their persons or their goods 
on board any armed ship; moreover, the measures announced were 
not put into execution at once, but a delay was granted in order to 
enable neutrals already on board armed ships to leave the same. 
And, finally, the Austro-Hungarian war-ships are instructed, even in 
case of encountering armed enemy merchant-vessels, to give warning 
and to provide for the safety of those on board, provided it seems 
possible to do so in the circumstances. 

The statement of the American Ambassador, to the effect that the 
armed British steamers Secondo and Welsh Prince were sunk without 
warning by Austrian submarines, is based on error. The Austrian 
government has in the mean time received information that no 
Austro-Htmgarian war-ships were at all concerned in the sinking of 
these vessels. 

The Austrian government has, as in the circular verbal note 
already referred to — reverting now to the question of aggravated 
submarine warfare referred to in the memorandtun — also in its 
declaration of January 31st of this year issued a warning to neutrals 
with corresponding time limit; indeed, the whole of the declaration 
itself is, from its nature, nothing more or less than a warning to the 
efect that no merchant-vessel tnay pass the area of sea expressly defined 
therein. Nevertheless, the Austrian war-ships have been instructed 
as far as possible to warn such merchant -vessels as may be encoun- 
tered in the area concerned and provide for the safety of passengers 
and crew. And the Austrian government is in the possession of 
nimierous reports stating that the crews and passengers of vessels 
destroyed in these waters have been saved. But the Austrian 
government cannot accept any responsibiUty for possible loss of 
himian life which may after all occur in connection with the 
destruction of armed vessels or vessels encotmtered in prohibited 
areas. Also it may be noted that the Austro-Hungarian submarines 
operate only in the Adriatic and Mediterranean Seas, and there is 
thus hardly any question as to any action affecting American inter- 
ests on the part of Austro-Hungarian war-ships. 

After all that has been said in the preamble to this memorandimi, 
it need hardly be said that the declaration of the waters in question 
as a prohibited area is in no way intended as a measure aiming at the 
destruction of human life, or even to endangering the same, but that 
its object — apart from the higher aims of relieving humanity from 


further suffering by shortening the war, is only to place Great Britain 
and its allies, who have — without establishing any legally effective 
blockade of the coasts of the Central Powers — hindered traffic by sea 
between neutrals and these Powers, in a like position of isolation, and 
render them amenable to a peace with some guarantee of permanency. 
That Austria-Hungary here makes use of other methods of war than 
her opponents is due mainly to circumstances beyond human con- 
trol. But the Austrian government is conscious of having done all 
in its power to avoid loss of human life. The object aimed at in the 
blockading of the Western Powers would be most swiftly and certainly 
attained if not a single human life were lost or endangered in those waters. 
To sum up, the Austrian government may point out that the 
assurance given to the Washington Cabinet in the case of the A ficona, 
and renewed in the case of the Persia, is neither withdrawn nor 
qualified by its statements of February lo, 1916, and January 
31, 1917. Within the limits of this assurance the Austrian govern- 
ment will, together with its allies, continue its endeavors to secure 
to the peoples of the world a share in the blessings of peace. If in 
the pursuit of this aim — which it may take for granted has the full 
sympathy of the Washington Cabinet itself — it should find itself 
compelled to impose restrictions on neutral traffic by sea in certain 
areas, it will not need so much to point to the behavior of its oppo- 
nents in this respect, which appears by no means an example to 
be followed, but rather to the fact that Austria-Hungary, through 
the persistence and hatred of its enemies, who are determined upon 
its destruction, is brought to a state of self-defense in so desperate 
extreme as is unsurpassed in the history of the world. The Austrian 
government is encouraged by the knowledge that the struggle now 
being carried on by Austria-Hungary tends not only toward the 
preservation of its own vital interests, but also toward the realiza- 
tion of the idea of equal rights for all states; and in this last and 
hardest phase of the war, which unfortunately calls for sacrifices on 
the part of friends as well, it regards it as of supreme importance to 
confirm in word and deed the fact that it is guided equally by the 
laws of humanity and by the dictates of respect for the dignity and 
interests of neutral peoples. 




The Norddeutsche Allgemeine Zeitung of May i, 19 17, gives the 
following speech by Doctor Helfferich, Secretary of State, on the 


economical effects of the submarine warfare, delivered in the prin- 
cipal committee of the Reichstag on April 28th. The speech is here 
given verbatim, with the exception of portions containing con- 
fidential statements: 

'' In the sitting of yesterday a member rightly pointed out that the 
technical and economical results of the submarine warfare have been 
estimated with caution. In technical respects the caution observed 
in estimating the results is plain; the sinkings have, during the first 
month, exceeded by nearly a quarter, in the second by nearly half, 
the estimated 600,000 tons, and for the present month also we may 
fairly cherish the best expectations. The technical success guar- 
antees the economical success with almost mathematical exactitude. 
True, the economical results cannot be so easily expressed numeri- 
cally and set down in a few big figures as the technical result in the 
amount of tonnage sunk. The economical effects of the submarine 
warfare are expressed in many different spheres covering a wide area, 
where the enemy seeks to render visibility still more difficult by 
resorting, so to speak, to statistical smoke-screens. 

"The English statistics to-day are most interesting, one might 
almost say, in what they wisely refrain from mentioning. The 
Secretary of State for the Navy pointed out yesterday how rapidly 
the pride of the British public had faded. The English are now 
suppressing our reports on the successes of our submarines and our 
statements as to submarine losses; they dare not make pubHc the 
amoimt of tonnage sunk, but mystify the public with shipping statis- 
tics which have given rise to general annoyance in the English Press 
itself. The EngHsh government lets its people go on calmly trusting 
to the myth that instead of six U-boats sunk there are a hundred at 
the bottom of the sea. It conceals from the world also the true 
course of the entries and departures of tonnage in British ports since 
the commencement of unrestricted submarine warfare. And more 
than all, the English government has since February suppressed 
most strictly all figures tending to throw light on the position of the 
grain-market. In the case of the coal exports, the country of 
destination is not published. The monthly trade report, which is 
usually issued with admirable promptness by the tenth of the next 
month or thereabouts, was for February delayed and incomplete; 
and for March it has not yet appeared at all. It is to be regretted 
that this sudden withdrawal of information makes it more difficult 
for us to estimate the effect of our submarine operations, but there 
is a gratifying side to the question, after all. It is not to be supposed 
that England should suddenly become reticent in order to avoid 
revealing its strength. 


"For the rest, what can be seen is still sufficient to give us an 

"I will commence with the tonnage. You are aware that in the 
first two months of the unrestricted submarine warfare more than 
1,600,000 tons were sunk, of which probably considerably over 
1,000,000 tons sailed under the British flag. 

"The estimates as to the quantity of EngUsh tonnage at present 
available are somev/hat divergent; in any case, whether we take the 
higher or the lower figures, a loss of more than a million tons in two 
months is a thing that England cannot endure for long. And to 
replace it, even approximately, by new building, is out of the ques- 
tion. In the year 19 14 England's newly built ships gave a tonnage 
increment of 1,600,000; in 191 5 it was 650,000 tons, in 19 16, only 
580,000, despite all efforts. And the normal loss of the British 
merchant fleet in peace-time amounts to between 700,000 and 800,- 
000 tons. It is hopeless to think of maintaining equilibriiim by 
urging on the building of new vessels. 

"The attempts which are made to enlist the neutral tonnage in 
British service by a system of rewards and punishments may here 
and there, to the ultimate disadvantage of the neutrals themselves, 
have met with some success, but even so, the neutrals must consider 
the need for preserving a merchant fleet themselves for peace-time, 
so that there is a narrow limit to what can be attained in this man- 
ner. Even in January of this year about 30 per cent, of the shipping 
entries into British ports were under foreign flags. I have heard 
estimates brought up to 80 per cent, in order to terrify the neutrals; 
if but 50 per cent, of this be correct it means a decrease in British 
shipping traffic of roughly one-sixth. Counting tonnage sunk and 
tonnage frightened off, the arrivals at British ports have been 
reduced, at a low estimate, by one-fovuth, and probably by as much 
as one-third, as against January. In January arrivals amounted to 
2.2 million net tons. I may supplement the incomplete English 
statistics by the information that in March the arrivals were only 
1.5 to 1.6 million tons net, and leave it to Mr. Carson to refute this. 
The 1.5 to 1.6 million tons represent, compared with the average 
entries in peace-time, amounting to 4.2 millions, not quite 40 per 
cent. This low rate will be further progressively reduced. Lloyd 
George at the beginning of the war reckoned on the last milliard. 
Those days are now past. Then he based his plans on munitions. 
England has here, with the aid of America, achieved extraordinary 
results. But the Somme and Arras showed that, even with these 
enormous resources, England was not able to beat us. Now, in his 
greeting to the American allies, Lloyd George cries out: 'Ships, 


ships, and more ships yet.' And this time he is on the right tack; 
it is on ships that the fate of the British world-empire will depend. 

''The Americans, too, have understood this. They propose to 
build a thousand wooden vessels of 3,000 tons. But before these 
can be brought into action they will, I confidently hope, have 
nothing left to save. 

**I base this confidence upon the indications which are visible 
despite the English policy of suppression and concealment. 

''Take the total British trade. The figures for March are still 
not yet available, but those for February tell us enough. 

"British imports amounted in January of this year to 90 million 
pounds sterHng, in February to only 70 million; the exports have 
gone down from 46 to 37 millions sterling — imports and exports 
together showing a decline of over 20 per cent, in the first month 
of the submarine warfare. And again, the rise in prices all round 
has, since the commencement of the U-boat war, continued at a 
more rapid rate, so that the decline in the import quantity from one 
month to another may fairly be estimated at 25 per cent. The 
figures for imports and exports, then, confirm my supposition as to 
the decrease of tonnage in the traffic with British ports. 

"The British government has endeavored, by the strictest meas- 
ures rigorously prohibiting import of less important articles, to 
ward off the decline in the quantity of vital necessaries imported. 
The attempt can only partially succeed. 

"In 1 9 16, out of a total import quantity of 42 million tons, about 
31 millions fall to three important groups alone, viz., foodstuffs 
and luxuries, timber, and iron ore; all other goods, including im- 
portant war materials, such as other ores and metals, petroleum, 
cotton and wool, rubber, only 11 milHon tons, or roughly one-fourth. 
A decline of one-fourth, then, as brought about by the first month 
of unrestricted submarine warfare, must affect article^ indispensable 
to life and to the purposes of war. 

"The decline in the imports in February, 191 7, as against Febru- 
ary, 1916, appears as follows: 

"Wool 17 per cent., cotton 27 per cent., flax 38 per cent., hemp 
48 per cent., jute 74 per cent., woolen materials 83 per cent., copper 
and copper ore 49 per cent., iron and steel 59 per cent. As to the 
imports of iron ore I will give more detailed figures : 

"Coffee 66 per cent., tea 41 per cent., raw sugar 10 per cent., 
refined sugar 90 per cent., bacon 17 per cent., butter 21 per cent., 
lard 21 per cent., eggs 39 per cent., timber 42 per cent. 

"The only increases worth noting are in the cases of leather, 
hides, rubber, and tin. 


"As regards the group in which we are most interested, the 
various sorts of grain, no figures for quantities have been given from 
February onward. 

''The mere juxtaposition of two comparable values naturally gives 
no complete idea of the facts. It should be borne in mind that the 
commencement of the unrestricted U-boat campaign came at a time 
when the economical position of England was not normal, but greatly 
weakened already by two and a half years of war. A correct judg- 
ment will, then, only be possible when we take into consideration 
the entire development of the imports during the course of the war. 

"I will here give only the most important figures. 

"In the case of iron ore England has up to now maintained its 
position better than in other respects. 

"Imports amounted in 1913 to 7.4 million tons. 

"In 1916 to 6.9 million tons. 

"January, 19 13, 689,000 tons 
"January, 19 16, 526,000 tons 
"January, 1917, 512,000 tons 

February, 1913, 658,000 tons. 
February, 1916, 404,000 tons. 
February, 19 17, 508,000 tons. 

'Here again comparison with the peace year 1913 shows for the 
months of January and February a not inconsiderable decrease, 
though the imports, especially in February, 191 7, were in excess of 
those for the same month in 191 6. 

"Timber imports, 1913, lo.i million loads. 
" " 1916, 5.9 million loads. 

February, 19 13, 406,000 loads. 
" 1916, 286,000 loads. 

" 191 7, 167,000 loads. 

"As regards mining timber especially, the import of which fell 
from 3.5 million loads in 1913 to 2.0 million in 1916, we have here 
December, 19 16, and January, 191 7, with 102,000 and 107,000 loads 
as the lowest import figures given since the beginning of 19 13; a 
statement for the import of mining timber is missing for February. 

"Before turning to the import of foodstuffs a word may be said 
as to the export of coal. 

"The total export of coal has decreased from 78 miUion tons in 
1 9 13 to 46^^ million tons ini9i5; ini9i6 only about 42 million tons 
were exported. In December, 19 16, the export quantity fell for the 
first time below 3 million tons, having remained between 3.2 and 
3.9 million tons during the months from January to November, 1916. 
In January, 191 7, a figure of 3.5 miUion tons was again reached; it 
is the more significant, therefore, that the coal export, which from 
the nature of the case exhibits only slight fluctuations from month 
to month, falls again in February, 191 7, to 2.9 million tons (as 


against 3.4 million tons in February of the year before), thus almost 
reaching once more to the lowest point hitherto recorded — that of 
December, 191 6. And it should be remembered that here, as in the 
case of all other exports, sunk transports are included in the English 

"Details as to the destmation of exported coal have since the 
beginning of this year been withheld. England is presumably desir- 
ous of saving the French and Italians the further distress of reading 
for the future in black and white the calamitous decline in their coal- 
supply. The serious nature of this decline, even up to the end of 
191 6, may be seen from the following figures: 

''England's coal export to France amounted in December, 19 16, 
to only 1,128,000 tons, as against 1,269,000 tons in January of the 
same year; the exports to Italy in December, 1916, amounted only 
to 278,000 tons, as against 431,000 tons in January, and, roughly, 
800,000 tons monthly average for the peace year 19 13. 

"As to the further development since the end of February, I am 
able to give some interesting details. Scotland's coal export in the 
first week of April was 103,000 tons, as against 194,000 tons the 
previous year; from the beginning of the year 1,783,000 tons, as 
against 2,486,000 tons the previous year. From this it is easy to see 
how the operations of the U-boats are striking at the root of railway 
and war industries in the countries allied with England 

"Lloyd George, in a great speech made on January 2 2d of this 
year, showed the EngHsh how they could protect themselves against 
the effects of submarine warfare by increased production in their own 
country. The practicability and effectiveness of his counsels are 
more than doubtful. He makes no attempt, however, to instruct his 
allies how they are to protect themselves against the throttling of 
the coal-supply. 

"I come now to the most important point: the position of England 
with regard to its food-supply. 

"First of all I would give a few brief figures by way of calling to 
mind the degree to which England is dependent upon supplies of 
foodstuffs from overseas. 

"The proportion of imports in total British consumption averaged 
during the last years of peace as follows: 

" Bread com, close on 80 per cent. 

"Fodder grain (barley, oats, maize), which can be utilized as 
substitutes for, and to supplement, the bread corn, 50 per cent.; 
meat, over 40 per cent.; butter, 60-65 per cent. The sugar con- 
sumption, failing any home production at all, must be entirely 
covered by imports from abroad. 


"I would further point out that our U-boats, inasmuch as con- 
cerns the food situation in England, are operating under quite 
exceptionally favorable conditions; the world's record harvest of 
191 5 has been followed by the world's worst harvest of 19 16, repre- 
senting a loss of 45-50 million tons of bread and fodder grain. The 
countries hardest hit are those most favorably situated, from the 
English point of view, in North America. The effects are now — the 
rich stocks from the former harvest having been consumed — becom- 
ing more evident every day and everywhere. The Argentine has 
put an embargo on exports of grain. As to the condition of affairs 
in the United States, this may be seen from the following figures: 

''The Department of Agriculture estimates the stocks of wheat 
still in the hands of the farmer on March i, 1917, at loi million 
bushels, or little over 2>^ million tons. The stocks for the previous 
year on that date amounted to 241 million bushels. Never during 
the whole of the time I have followed these figures back have the 
stocks been so low or even nearly so. The same appHes to stocks 
of maize. Against a supply of 1,138,000 bushels on March i, 1916, 
we have for this year only 789,000 bushels. 

"The extraordinary scarcity of supplies is nearing the panic limit. 
The movement of prices during the last few weeks is simply fan- 
tastic. Maize, which was noted in Chicago at the beginning of 
January, 191 7, at 95 cents, rose by the end of April to 127 cents, 
and by April 2 5th had risen further to 148 cents. Wheat in New York, 
which stood at Sj^i cents in July, 1914, and by the beginning of 1917 
had already risen to 19 iK cents, rose at the beginning of April to 
229 cents, and was noted at no less than 281 on April 2d. This is 
three and a half times the peace figure! In German currency at 
normal peace-time exchange, these 281 cents represent about 440 
marks per ton, or, at present rate of exchange for dollars, about 580 
marks per ton. 

"That, then, is the state of affairs in the country which is to help 
England in the war of starvation criminally begun by itself! 

"In England no figures are now made public as to imports and 
stocks of grain. I can, however, state as follows: 

"On the last date for which stocks were noted, January 13, 1917, 
England's visible stocks of wheat amounted to 5.3 million quarters, 
as against 6.3 and 5.9 million quarters in the two previous years. 
From January to May and June there is, as a rule, a marked decline 
in the stocks, and even in normal years the imports during these 
months do not cover the consumption. In June, 1914 and 191 5, the 
visible stocks amounted only to about 2 million quarters, represent- 
ing the requirements for scarcely three weeks. 


"We have no reason to believe that matters have developed more 
favorably during the present year. This is borne out by the import 
figures for January — as published. The imports of bread com and 
fodder grain — I take them altogether, as in the English regulations 
for eking out supplies — amoimted only to 12.6 miUion quarters, as 
against 19.8 and 19.2 in the two previous years. 

''For February the English statistics show an increase in the 
import value of unstated import quantity of all grain of 50 per cent., 
as against February, 1916. This gives, taking the distribution 
among the various sorts of grain as similar to that of January, and 
reckoning with the rise in prices since, about the same import 
quantity as in the previous year. But in view of the great decrease 
in American grain shipments and the small quantity which can have 
come from India and Australia, the statement is hardly credible. 
We may take it that March has brought a further decline, and that 
to-day, when we are nearing the time of the three-week stocks, the 
English supplies are lower than in the previous years. 

"The Enghsh themselves acknowledge this. Lloyd George 
stated in February that the English grain-supplies were lower than 
ever within the memory of man. A high official in the English 
Ministry of Agriculture, Sir Ailwyn Fellowes, speaking in April at an 
agricultural congress, added that owing to the submarine warfare, 
which was an extremely serious peril to England, the state of affairs 
had grown far worse even than then. 

"Captain Bathurst, of the British Food Controller's Department 
(Kriegsernahrungsamt), stated briefly on April 19th that the then 
consumption of breadstuff s was 50 per cent, in excess of the present 
and prospective supphes. It would be necessary to reduce the con- 
sumption of bread by fully a third in order to make ends meet. 

"Shortly before, Mr. Wallhead, the member for Manchester, at a 
conference of the Independent Labor Party in Leeds had stated 
that, according to his information, England would in six to eight 
weeks be in a complete state of famine. 

"The crisis in which England is placed — and we can fairly call 
it a crisis now — is further aggravated by the fact that the supplies 
of other important foodstuffs have likewise taken an unfavorable 

"The import of meat in February, 19 17, shows the lowest figures 
for many years, with the single exception of September, 1914. 

"The marked falling off in the butter imports— February, 191 7, 
showing only half as much as in the previous year — is not nearly 
counterbalanced by the margarine which England is making every 
effort to introduce. 


"The Import of lard also, most of which comes from the United 
States, shows a decline, owing to the poor American crops of fod- 
der-stuffs. The price of lard in Chicago has risen from isH 
cents at the beginning of January, 1917, to 2i>^ cents on April 
25th, and the price of pigs in the same time from 9.80 to 16.50 

"Most serious of all, however, is the shortage of potatoes, which 
at present is simply catastrophic. The English crop was the worst 
for a generation past. The imports are altogether insignificant. 
Captain Bathurst stated on April 19th that in about four weeks the 
supphes of potatoes in the country would be entirely exhausted. 

"The full seriousness of the case now stares English states- 
men in the face. Up to now they have beHeved it possible to exor- 
cise the danger by voluntary economies. Now they find themselves 
compelled to have recourse to compulsory measures. I believe it is 
too late." 

The Secretary of State then gives a detailed account of the 
measures taken up to date in England for dealing with the food 
question, and thereafter continues: 

" On March 2 2d again the English food dictator. Lord Devonport, 
stated in the House of Lords that a great reduction in the constunp- 
tion of bread would be necessary, but that it would be a national 
disaster if England should have to resort to compulsion. 

"His representative, Bathurst, stated at the same time: *We do 
not wish to introduce so un-English a system. In the first place, 
because we beHeve that the patriotism of the people can be trusted 
to assist us in our endeavors toward economy, and, further, because, 
as we can see from the example of Germany, the compulsory system 
promises no success ; finally, because such a system would necessitate 
a too compHcated administrative machinery and too numerous staffs 
of men and women whose services could be better employed else- 

"Meantime the English government has, on receipt of the latest 
reports, decided to adopt this un-English system which has proved a 
failure in Germany, declaring now that the entire organization for 
the purpose is in readiness. 

"I have still something further to say about the vigorous steps 
now being taken in England to further the progress of agriculture 
in the country itself. I refrain from going into this, however, as 
the measures in question cannot come to anything by next harvest- 
time, nor can they affect that harvest at all. The winter deficiency 
can hardly be balanced, even with the greatest exertions, by the 
spring. Not until the 1918 crop, if then, can any success be attained. 


And between then and now lies a long road, a road of suffering for 
England, and for all countries dependent upon imports for their 

"Everything points to the likelihood that the universal failure of 
the harvest in 19 16 will be followed by a Hke universal failure in 
19 1 7. In the United States the official reports of acreage under 
crops are worse than ever, showing 63.4, against 78.3 the previous 
year. The winter wheat is estimated at only 430 million bushels, 
as against 492 million bushels for the previous year and 650 miUion 

bushels for 191 5. 

"The prospects, then, for the next year's harvest are poor indeed, 
and offer no hope of salvation to our enemies. 

"As to our own outlook, this is well known to those present: 
short, but safe— for we can manage by ourselves. And to-day we 
can say that the war of starvation, that crime against humanity, 
has turned against those who commenced it. We hold the enemy 
in an iron grip. No one can save them from their fate. Not even 
the apostles of humanity across the great ocean, who are now 
commencing to protect the smaller nations by a blockade of our 
neutral neighbors through prohibition of exports, and seeking thus 
to drive them, under the lash of starvation, into entering into the 
war against us. 

"Our enemies are feeling the grip of the fist that holds them 
by the neck. They are trying to force a decision. England, mis- 
tress of the seas, is seeking to attain its end by land, and driving her 
sons by hundreds of thousands to death and mutilation. Is this the 
England that was to have sat at ease upon its island till we were 
starved into submission, that could wait till their big brother across 
the Atlantic arrived on the scene with ships and million^ armies, 
standing fast in crushing superiority until the last annihilating 


"No, gentlemen, our enemies have no longer time to wait. 
Time is on our side now. True, the test imposed upon us by the 
turn of the world's history is enormous. What our troops are doing 
to help, what our young men in blue are doing, stands far above all 
comparison. But they will attain their end. For us at home, too, 
it is hard; not so hard by far as for them out there, yet hard enough. 
Those at home must do their part as well. If we remain true to 
ourselves, keeping our own house in order, maintaining internal 
unit} , then we have won existence and the future for our Fatherland. 
Everything is at stake. The German people is called upon now, in 
these weeks heavy with impending decision, to show that it is worthy 
of continued existence." 




JANUARY 24, I918 

''Gentlemen, it is my duty to give you a true picture of the peace 
negotiations, to set forth the various phases of the results obtained 
up to now, and to draw therefrom such conclusions as are true, 
logical, and justifiable. 

"First of all it seems to me that those who consider the progress 
of the negotiations too slow cannot have even an approximate idea 
of the difficulties which we naturally had to encounter at every step. 
I will in my remarks take the liberty of setting forth these difficulties, 
but would like first to point out a cardinal difference existing between 
the peace negotiations in Brest-Litovsk and all others which have 
ever taken place in the history of the world. Never, so far as I 
am aware, have peace negotiations been conducted with open 
windows. It would be impossible that negotiations of the depth 
and extent of the present could from the start proceed smoothly 
and without opposition. We are faced with nothing less than the 
task of building up a new world, of restoring all that the most 
merciless of all wars has destroyed and cast down. In all the peace 
negotiations we know of the various phases have been conducted 
more or less behind closed doors, the results being first declared to 
the world when the whole was completed. All history books tell 
us, and indeed it is obvious enough, that the toilsome path of such 
peace negotiations leads constantly over hill and dale, the prospects 
appearing often more or less favorable day by day. But when 
the separate phases themselves, the details of each day's proceedings, 
are telegraphed all over the world at the time, it is again obvious 
that nervousness prevailing throughout the world must act like an 
electric current and excite public opinion accordingly. We were 
fully aware of the disadvantage of this method of proceeding. 
Nevertheless, we at once agreed to the wish of the Russian govern- 
ment in respect of this publicity, desiring to meet them as far as 
possible, and also because we had nothing to conceal on our part, 
and because it would have made an unfavorable impression if we 
had stood firmly by the methods hitherto pursued, of secrecy until 
completion. But the complete publicity in the negotiations makes 
it insistent that the great public, the country behind, and above all 
the leaders, must keep cool. The match must be played out in cold 
blood, and the end will be satisfactory if the peoples of the Monarchy 
support their representatives at the conference. 


*'It should be stated beforehand that the basis on which Austria- 
Hungary treats with the various newly constituted Russian states 
is that of *no indemnities and no annexations.' That is the pro- 
gram which a year ago, shortly after my appointment as Mmister, 
I put before those who wished to talk of peace, and which I repeated 
to the Russian leaders on the occasion of their first offers of peace. 
And I have not deviated from that program. Those who believe 
that I am to be turned from the way which I have set myself to 
follow are poor psychologists. I have never left the public in the 
slightest doubt as to which way I intended to go, and I have never 
allowed myself to be turned aside so much as a hair's-breadth from 
that way, either to right or left. And I have since become far from a 
favorite of the Pan-Germans and of those in the Monarchy who 
follow the Pan-German ideas. I have at the same time been hooted 
as an inveterate parti zan of war by those whose program is peace 
at any price, as innumerable letters have informed me. Neither 
has ever disturbed me; on the contrary, the double insults have 
been my only comfort in this serious time. I declare now once 
again that I ask not a single kreuzer, not a single square meter of 
land from Russia, and that if Russia, as appears to be the case, 
takes the same point of view, then peace must result. Those 
who wish for peace at any price might entertain some doubt 
as to my 'no-annexation' intentions toward Russia if I did not 
tell them to their faces with the same complete frankness that 
I shall never assent to the conclusion of a peace going beyond 
the lines just laid down. If the Russian delegates demand any 
surrender of territory on our part, or any war indemnity, then 
I shall continue the war, despite the fact that I am as anxious 
for peace as they, or I would resign if I could not attain the 
end I seek. 

"This once said, and emphatically asserted, that there Is no 
ground for the pessimistic anticipation of the peace falling through, 
since the negotiating committees are agreed on the basis of no 
annexations or indemnities — and nothing but new instructions from 
the various Russian governments, or their disappearance, could 
shift that basis — I then pass to the two great difficulties in which 
are contained the reasons why the negotiations have not proceeded 
as quickly as we all wished. 

"The first difficulty is this: that we are not dealing with a single 
Russian peace delegation, but with various newly formed Russian 
states, whose spheres of action are as yet by no means definitely 
fixed or explained among themselves. We have to reckon with the 
following: firstly, the Russia which is administered from St. Peters- 


burg; secondly, our new neighbor proper, the great State of Ukraine; 
thirdly, Finland; and, fourthly, the Caucasus. 

"With the first two of these states we are treating directly; 
that is to say, face to face; with the other two it was at first in a 
more or less indirect fashion, as they had not sent any representative 
to Brest-Litovsk. We have then four Russian parties, and four 
separate Powers on our own side to meet them. The case of the 
Caucasus, with which we ourselves have, of course, no direct 
questions to settle, but which, on the other hand, is in conflict with 
Turkey, will serve to show the extent of the matter to be debated. 

"The point in which we ourselves are most directly interested is 
that of the great newly established state upon our frontiers, Ukraine. 
In the course of the proceedings we have already got well ahead 
with this delegation. We are agreed upon the aforementioned basis 
of no indemnities and no annexations, and have in the main arrived 
at settlement on the fact that trade relations are to be re-established 
with the new republic, as also on the manner of so doing. But this 
very case of the Ukraine illustrates one of the prevailing difficulties. 
While the Ukraine Republic takes up the position of being entirely 
autonomous and justified in treating independently with ourselves, 
the Russian delegation insists that the boundaries between their 
territory and that of the Ukraine are not yet definitely fixed, and 
that Petersburg is therefore able to claim the right of taking part 
in ouf deUberations with the Ukraine, which claim is not admitted 
by the members of the Ukraine delegation themselves. This 
unsettled state of affairs in the internal conditions of Russia, how- 
ever, gave rise to very serious delays. We got over these diffi- 
culties, and I hope that in a few days' time we should be able once 
more to resume negotiations. 

**As to the position to-day, I cannot say what this may be. I 
received yesterday from my representative at Brest-Litovsk the 
following two telegrams : 

"'Herr Joffe has this evening, in his capacity as President of 
the Russian Delegation, issued a circular letter to the delegations 
of the four allied Powers in which he states that the Workers' and 
Peasants' Government of the Ukrainian Republic has decided to 
send two delegates to Brest-Litovsk with instructions to take part 
in the peace negotiations on behalf of the central committee of the 
Workers', Soldiers', and Peasants' Councils of Pan-Ukraine, but also 
to form a supplementary part of the Russian delegation itself. 
Herr Joffe adds with regard to this that the Russian delegation is 
prepared to receive these Ukranian representatives among them- 
selves. The above statement is supplemented by a copy of a 


''declaration" dated from Kharkov, addressed to the president of 
the Russian Peace Delegation at Brest, and emanating from the 
Workers' and Peasants' Government of the Ukrainian Republic, 
proclaiming that the Central Rada at Kieff only represents the 
propertied classes, and is consequently incapable of acting on behalf 
of the entire Ukrainian people. The Ukrainian Workers' and 
Peasants' Government declares that it cannot acknowledge any 
decisions arrived at by the delegates of the Central Rada at Kieff 
without its participation, but has nevertheless decided to send 
representatives to Brest-Litovsk, there to participate as a supple- 
mentary fraction of the Russian Delegation, which they recognize 
as the accredited representatives of the Federative government of 

''Furthennore: 'The German translation of the Russian original 
text of the communication received yesterday evening from Herr 
Joffe regarding the delegates of the Ukrainian government at 
Kharkov and the two appendices thereto runs as follows: 

'"To the President of the Austro-Hungarian Peace Delegation. 

"'Sir, — In forwarding you herewith a copy of a declaration 
received by me from the delegates of the Workers' and Peasants' 
Government of the Ukrainian Republic, W. M. Schachrai and E. G. 
Medwjedew, and their mandates, I have the honor to inform you 
that the Russian Delegation, in full agreement with its frequently 
repeated acknowledgment of the right of self-determination among 
all peoples — including naturally the Ukrainian — sees nothing to 
hinder the participation of the representatives of the Workers' and 
Peasants' Government of the Ukrainian Republic in the peace nego- 
tiations, and receives them, according to their wish, among the 
personnel of the Russian Peace Delegation, as accredited repre- 
sentatives of the Workers' and Peasants' Government of the 
Ukrainian Republic. In bringing this to your knowledge, I beg 
you, sir, to accept the expression of my most sincere respect. — The 
President of the Russian Peace Delegation: A. Joffe.' 

"'Appendix i. To the President of the Peace Delegation of the 
Russian Republic. Declaration. 

"'We, the representatives of the Workers' and Peasants* Govern- 
ment of the Ukrainian Republic, People's Commissary for Military 
Affairs, W. M. Schachrai, and the president of the Pan-Ukrainian 
Central Executive Committee of t^e Council of the Workers', 
Soldiers', and Peasants' Deputation, E. G. Medwjedew, delegated 
to proceed to Brest-Litovsk for the purpose of conducting peace 
negotiations with the representatives of Germany, Austria-Hungary, 
Bulgaria, and Turkey, in full agreement with the representative^ 


of the Workers' and Peasants' Government of the Russian Federa- 
tive RepubHc, thereby understood the Council of People's Com- 
missaries, hereby declare as follows: The General Secretariat 
of the Ukrainian Central Rada can in no case be acknowledged as 
representing the entire Ukrainian people. In the name of the 
Ukrainian workers, soldiers, and peasants, we declare categorically 
that all resolutions formed by the General Secretariat without our 
assent will not be accepted by the Ukrainian people, cannot be 
carried out, and can in no case be realized. 

'''In full agreement with the Council of People's Commissaries, 
and thus also with the Delegation of the Russian Workers' and 
Peasants' Government, we shall for the future undertake the conduct 
of the peace negotiations with the Delegation of the Four Powers, 
together with the Russian Peace Delegation. 

"'And we now bring to the knowledge of the president the 
following resolution, passed by the Central Executive Committee 
of the Pan-Ukrainian Council of Workers', Soldiers', and Peasants' 
Deputies, on the 30th December, I9i7-i2th January, 1918: 

'"The Central Committee has decided: To delegate Comrade 
Medwjedew, president of the Central Executive Committee, and 
People's Secretary Satonski and Commissary Schachrai, to take 
part in the peace negotiations, instructing them at the same time 
to declare categorically that all attempts of the Ukrainian Central 
Rada to act in the name of the Ukrainian people are to be regarded 
as arbitrary steps on the part of the bourgeois group of the Ukrainian 
population, against the will and interests of the working classes of the 
Ukraine, and that no resolutions formed by the Central Rada will 
be acknowledged either by the Ukrainian Soviet government or by 
the Ukrainian people; that the Ukrainian Workers' and Peasants' 
Government regards the Council of People's Commissaries as 
representatives of the Pan-Russian Soviet government, and as 
accordingly entitled to act on behalf of the entire Russian Federa- 
tion; and that the delegation of the Ukrainian Workers' and 
Peasants' Government, sent out for the purpose of exposing the 
arbitrary steps of the Ukrainian Central Rada, will act together 
with and in full agreement with the Pan-Russian Delegation. 

'"Herewith: The mandate issued by the People's Secretariat of 
the Ukrainian Workers' and Peasants' Republic, 30th December, 


"'Note: People's Secretary for Enlightenment of the People, 
Wladimir Petrowitch Satonski, was taken ill on the way, and did 
not, therefore, arrive with us. 

'"January, 19 18. 


'''The President of the Central Executive Committee of the 
Ukrainian Coimcil of Workers', Soldiers', and Peasants' Deputies, 
E. Medwjedew. 

"'The People's Commissary for MiHtary Affairs, Schachrai. 

***A true copy of the original. 

"'The Secretary of the Peace Delegation, Leo Karachou.' 

"Appendix 2. 

"'On the resolution of the Central Executive Committee of the 
Council of Workers', Peasants', and Soldiers' Deputies of Ukraina, 
the People's Secretariat of the Ukrainian Republic hereby appoints, 
in the name of the Workers' and Peasants' Government of Ukraina, 
the president of the Central Executive Committee of the Council of 
Workers', Soldiers', and Peasants' Deputies of Ukraina, Jesim 
Gregoriewitch Medwjedew, the People's Secretary for Military 
Affairs, Wasili Matwjejewitch Schachrai, and the People's Secretary 
for Enlightenm.ent of the People, Wladimir Petro witch Satonski, in 
the name of the Ukrainian People's Republic, to take part in the 
negotiations with the governments of Germany, Austria- Hungary, 
Turkey, and Bulgaria as to the terms of peace between the mentioned 
states and the Russian Federative Republic. With this end in view 
the mentioned deputies, Jesim Gregoriewitch Medwjedew, Wasili 
Matwjejewitch Schachrai, and Wladimir Petrowitch Satonski, are 
empowered, in all cases where they deem it necessary, to issue 
declarations and to sign documents in the name of the Workers' and 
Peasants' Government of the Ukrainian Republic. The accredited 
representatives of the Ukrainian Workers' and Peasants' Govern- 
ment are bound to act throughout in accordance with the actions 
of the accredited representatives of the Workers' and Peasants' 
Government of the Russian Federative Republic, whereby is under- 
stood the Council of People's Commissaries. 

"'In the name of the Workers' and Peasants' Government of 
the Ukrainian People's Republic, the People's Secretary for Inter- 
national Affairs, for Internal Affairs, Military Affairs, Justice, 
Works, Commissariat. 

"'The Manager of the Secretariat. 

"'Kharkov, 30th December, 191 7-1 2th January, 1918. 

" ' In accordance with the copy. 

"'The President of the Russian Peace Delegation, A. Joffe.' 

"This is at any rate a new difficulty, since we cannot and will not 
interfere in the internal affairs of Russia. 

"This once disposed of, however, there will be no further difficul- 
ties to encounter here; we shall, in agreement with the Ukrainian 
Republic, determine that the old boundaries between Austria-Hungary 


and the former Russia will also be maintained as between ourselves 
and the Ukraine. 


"As regards Poland, the frontiers of which, by the way, have 
not yet been exactly determined, we want nothing at all from this 
new state. Free and uninfluenced, the population of Poland shall 
choose its own fate. For my part I attach no great weight to the 
form of the people's vote in this respect; the more surely it expresses 
the general wish of the people, the better I shall be pleased. For I 
desire only the voluntary attachment of Poland ; only in the express 
wish of Poland itself toward that end can I see any guaranty for 
lasting harmony. It is my unalterable conviction that the Polish 
question must not be allowed to delay the signing oj peace by a single 
day. If, after peace is arrived at, Poland should wish to approach 
us, we will not reject its advances — the Polish question must not 
and will not endanger the peace itself. 

"I should have been glad if the Polish government had been able 
to take part in the negotiations, since in my opinion Poland is an 
independent state. The Petersburg government, however, takes 
the attitude that the present Polish government is not entitled to 
speak in the name of the country, and does not acknowledge it as 
competent to represent the country, and we therefore gave way on 
this point in order to avoid possible conflict. The question is 
certainly one of importance, but it is more important still in my 
opinion to set aside all difficulties likely to delay the negotiations. 


"The second difficulty to be reckoned with, and one which has 
been most widely echoed in the Press, is the diference of opinion 
between our German allies and the Petersburg government anent 
the interpretation of the right of self-determination among the Rus- 
sian peoples; that is to say, in the areas occupied by German 
troops. Germany maintains that it does not aim at any annexation 
of territory by force from Russia, but, briefly stated, the ditference 
of opinion is a double one. 

"In the first place, Germany rightly maintains that the numerous 
expressions of desire for ituiependence on the part of legislative cor- 
porations, communal representations, etc., in the occupied areas 
should be taken as the provisional basis for the will of the people, 
to be later tested by plebiscite on a broader foundation, a point of 


view which the Russian government at first was indisposed to 
agree to, as it did not consider the existing administrations in 
Courland and Lithuania entitled to speak for those provinces any 
more than in the case of Poland. 

''In the second place, Russia demands that this plebiscite shall 
take place after all German troops and officials have been withdrawn 
from the occupied provinces, while Germany, in reply to this, points 
out that if this principle were carried to its utmost limits it would 
create a vacuum, which could not fail to bring about at once a 
state of complete anarchy and the utmost misery. It should 
here be noted that everything in these provinces which to-day 
renders possible the life of a state at all is German property. Rail- 
ways, posts, and telegraphs, the entire industry, and, moreover, the 
entire administrative machinery, police, law courts, all are in Ger- 
man hands. The sudden withdrawal of all this apparatus would, 
in fact, create a condition of things which seems practically impossible 
to maintain. 

"In both cases it is a question of finding a middle way, which, 
moreover, miist he found. 

''The diffierences between these two points of view are in my opinion 
not great enough to justify failure of the negotiations. 

''But such negotiations cannot be settled from one day to another; 
they take time. 

"// once we have attained peace with Russia, then in my opinion 
the general peace cannot he long delayed, despite all efforts on the 
part of the Western Entente statesmen. I have learned that some 
are unable to understand why I stated in my first speech after the 
resumption of negotiations that it was not now a question at Brest 
of a general peace, but of a separate peace with Russia. This was 
the necessary recognition of a plain fact, which Herr Trotzky also 
has admitted without reserve, and it was necessary, since the nego- 
tiations would have been on a different footing — that is to say, in 
a more limited sphere— \i treating with Russia alone than if it were 
a case of treating for a general peace. 

"Though I have no illusions in the direction of expecting the 
fruit of general peace to ripen in a single night, I am nevertheless 
convinced that the fruit has begun to ripen, and that it is now only 
a question of holding out whether we are to obtain a general honor- 
able peace or not. 

Wilson's message 

"I have recently been confirmed in this view by the offer of 
peace put forward by the President of the United States of America 


to the whole world. This is ait offer of peace, for in fourteen points 
Mr. Wilson sets forth the principles upon which he seeks to establish 
a general peace. Obviously, an offer of this nature cannot be 
expected to furnish a scheme acceptable in every detail. If that 
were the case, then negotiations would be superfluous altogether 
and peace could be arrived at by a simple acceptance, a single 
assent. This, of course, is not so. 

"But I have no hesitation in declaring that these last proposals 
on the part of President Wilson seem to me considerably nearer the 
Austro-Hungarian point of view, and that there are among his 
proposals some which we can even agree to with great pleasure. 

''If I may now be allowed to go further into these proposals, I 
must, to begin with, point out two things: 

"So far as the proposals are concerned with our allies — mention 
is made of the German possession of Belgium and of the Turkish 
Empire — I declare that, in fulfilment of our duty to our allies, I 
am firmly determined to hold out in defense of our allies to the very 
last. The pre-war possessions of our allies we will defend equally 
with our own. This standpoint is that of all four allies in complete 
reciprocity with ourselves. 

"In the second place, I have to point out that I must politely 
hut definitely decline the method of councils such as we govern by 
in our internal affairs. We have in Austria a parliament elected hy 
general, equal, direct and secret ballot. There is not a more demo- 
cratic parliament in the world, and this parliament, together with 
the other constitutionally admissible factors, has the sole right 
to decide upon matters of internal Austrian affairs. I speak of 
Austria only, because I do not speak of Hungarian internal affairs 
in the Austrian Delegation. I should not consider it constitutional 
to do so. And we do not interfere in American affairs; hut, on the 
other hand, we do not wish for any foreign guidance from any state 
whatever. Having said this, I may be permitted, with regard to 
the remaining points, to state as follows : 

"As to the point deahng with the abolition of 'secret diplomacy' 
and the introduction of full openness in the negotiations, I have 
nothing to say. From my point of view I have no objection to 
such public negotiations so long as full reciprocity is the basis of 
the same, though I do entertain considerable doubt as to whether, 
all things considered, it is the quickest and most practical method 
of arriving at a result. Diplomatic negotiations are simply a matter 
of business. But it might easily be imagined that in the case, for 
instance, of commercial treaties between one country and another 
it would not be advisable to publish incomplete results beforehand 


to the world. In such negotiations both parties naturally com- 
mence by setting their demands as high as possible in order to 
climb down gradually, using this or that expressed demand as 
matter for compensaimt in other ways until finally an equilibrium 
of the opposing interests is arrived at, a point which must necessarily 
be reached if agreement is to be come to at all. If such negotiations 
were to be carried on with full publicity, nothing could prevent the 
general public from passionately defending every separate clause 
involved, regarding any concession as a defeat, even when such 
clauses had only been advanced for tactical reasons. And when the 
public takes up any such point with particular fervor, ultimate 
agreement may be thereby rendered impossible or the final agree- 
ment may, if arrived at, be regarded as in itself a defeat, possibly 
by both sides. And this would not conduce to peaceable relations 
thereafter; it would, on the contrary, increase the friction between 
the states concerned. And as in the case of commercial treaties, 
so also with political negotiations, which deal with political matters. 

''If the aboHtion of secret diplomacy is to mean that no secret 
compacts are to be made, that no agreements are to be entered upon 
without the public knowledge, then I have no objection to the 
introduction of this principle. As to how it is to be realized and 
adherence thereto insured, I confess I have no idea at all. Granted 
that the governments of two countries are agreed, they will always 
be able to make a secret com.pact without any one being aware of 
the fact. These, however, are minor points. I am not one to stick 
by formalities, and a question of more or less formal nature will 
never prevent me from coming to a sensible arrangement. 
'Point I, then, is one that can be discussed. 
Point 2 is concerned with the freedom of the seas. In this 
postulate the President speaks from the hearts of all, and I can 
here fully and completely share America's desire, the more so as 
the President adds the words, 'outside territorial waters' — that is 
to say, we are to understand the freedom of the open sea, and there 
is thus, of course, no question of any interference by force in the 
sovereign rights of our faithful Turkish alHes. Their standpoint 
in this respect will be ours. 

"Point 3, which is definitely directed against any future economi- 
cal war, is so right, so sensible, and has so often been craved by 
ourselves that I have here again nothing to remark. 

"Point 4, which demands general disarmament, sets forth in 
particularly clear and lucid form the necessity of reducing after this 
present war the free competition in armaments to a footing sufficient 
for the internal security of states. Mr. Wilson states this frankly 


and openly. In my speech at Budapest some months back I ven- 
tured to express the same idea; it forms part of my political creed ^ 
and I am most happy to find any other voice uttering the same 

"As regards the Russian clause, we are already showing in deeds 
that we are endeavoring to bring about friendly relations with our 
neighbors there. 

"With regard to Italy, Serbia, Rumania and Montenegro, I can 
only repeat my statement already made in the Hungarian Delegation. 

"I am not disposed to effect any insurance on the war ventures 
of our enemies. 

"I am not disposed to make any one-sided concessions to our 
enemies, who still obstinately adhere to the standpoint of fighting on 
until the final victory; to prejudice permanently the Monarchy by 
such concessions, which would give the enemy the invaluable advan- 
tage of being able to carry on the war indefinitely without risk. 

"Let Mr. Wilson use the great influence he undoubtedly possesses 
among his allies to persuade them on their part to declare 07t what 
conditions they are willing to treat; he will then have rendered the 
enormous service of having set on foot the general peace negotia- 
tions. I am here replying openly and freely to Mr. Wilson, and I 
will speak as openly and freely to any who wish to speak for 
themselves, but it must necessarily be understood that time, and 
the continuation of the war, cannot but afect the situations here 

"I have already said this once before; Italy is a striking example. 
Italy had the opportunity before the war of making great territorial 
acquisitions without firing a shot. It declined this and entered into 
the war; it has lost hundreds of thousands of lives, milliards in war 
expenses and values destroyed; it has brought want and misery 
upon its own population, and all this only to lose forever an advantage 
which it might have won. 

"Finally, as regards point 13, it Is an open secret that we are 
adherents to the idea of establishing 'an independent Polish state 
to include the areas undoubtedly occupied by Polish inhabitants.' 
On this point also we shall, I think, soon agree with Mr. Wilson. 
And if the President crowns his proposals with the idea of a universal 
League of Nations he will hardly meet with any opposition thereto 
on the part of the Austro-Hungarian Monarchy. 

"As will be seen from this comparison of my views with those 
of Mr. Wilson, we are not only agreed in essentials as to the great 
principles for rearrangement of the world after this war, but our 


ideas as to several concrete questions hearing on the peace are closely 

"The differences remaining do not appear to me so great but 
that a discussion of these points might lead to a clearer under- 
standing and bring us closer still. 

"The situation, then, seems to be this: Austria-Hungary, on the 
one hand, and the United States of America, on the other, are the 
two Great Powers in the hostile "groups of states whose interests 
are least opposed one to the other. It seems reasonable, then, to 
suppose that an exchange of opinion between these two Powers might 
form the natural starting-point for a conciliatory discussion between 
all those states which have not yet entered upon peace negotiations. 
{Applause.] So much for Wilson's proposals. 


"And now, gentlemen, I hasten to conclude. But this con- 
clusion is perhaps the most important of all I have to say; I am 
endeavoring to bring about peace between the Ukraine and Peters- 

"The conclusion of peace with Petersburg alters nothing in our 
definitive situation. Austro-Hungarian troops are nowhere opposed 
to the Petersburg government— we have the Ukrainian against us — 
and it is impossible to export anything from Petersburg, since they 
have nothing there themselves but revolution and anarchy, goods 
which the Bolshevists, no doubt, woidd be glad to export, but which 
I must politely decline to receive. 

"In spite of this, I wish to make peace with Petersburg as well, 
since this, like any other cessation of hostiUties, brings us nearer 
to the general peace. 

"It is otherwise with Ukraine. For the Ukraine has supplies of 
provisions which they will export if we can agree on commercial 
terms. The question of food to-day is a matter of anxiety through- 
out the world; among our opponents, and also in the neutral 
countries, it is a leading question. I wish to profit by the conclusion 
of peace with those Russian states which have food to export, in 
order to help our own population. We could and would hold out 
without this assistance. But I know my duty, and my duty bids me 
do all that can be done to lighten the^burden of our suffering people, 
and I will not, therefore, from any hysterical nervousness about 
getting to final peace a few days or a few weeks earlier, throw away 
this possible advantage to our people. Such a peace takes time and 
cannot be concluded in a day. For such a peace must definitely 



state whether, what, and how the Russian party will deliver, for the 
reason that the Ukraine on its part wishes to close the business not 
after, but at the signing of peace. 

"I have already mentioned that the unsettled conditions in this 
newly established state occasion great difficulty and naturally con- 
siderable delay in the negotiations. 


"// you fall on me from behind, if you force me to come to terms 
at once in headlong fashion, we shall gain no economical advantage 
at all, and our people will then be forced to renounce the alleviation 
which they should have gained from the peace. 

*'A surgeon conducting a difficult operation with a crowd behind 
him standing watch in hand may very likely complete the operation 
in record time, but in all probability the patient would not thank 
him for the manner in which it had been carried out. 

''If you give our present opponents the impression that we must 
have peace at once, and at any price, we shall not get so much as a 
single measure of grain, and the result will be more or less platonic. 
It is no longer by any means a question principally of terminating 
the war on the Ukrainian front; neither we nor the Ukrainians them- 
selves intend to continue the war now that we are agreed upon the 
no-annexation basis. It is a question — I repeat it once again — not 
of 'imperialistic' annexation plans and ideas, but of securing for our 
population at last the merited reward of their endurance, and pro- 
curing them those supplies of food for which they are waiting. Our 
partners in the deal are good business men and are closely watching, 
to see whether you are forcing me to act or not. 

^^If you wish to ruin the peace, if you are anxious to renounce 
the supply of grain, then it would be logical enough to force my 
hand by speeches and resolutions, strikes and demonstrations, but 
not otherwise. And there is not an atom of truth in the idea that 
we are to-day at such a pass that we must prefer a bad peace to-day 
without economical gain rather than a good peace with economical 
advantages to-morrow. 

"The difficulties in the matter of food of late are not due solely 
to lack of actual provisions; it is the crises in coal, transport, and 
organization which are increasing. When you at home get up strikes 
you are moving in a vicious circle; the strikes increase and aggravate 
the crises concerned aiui hinder the supplies of food and coal. You 
are cutting your own throats in so doing, and all who believe that 
peace is accelerated thereby are terribly mistaken. 


"It is believed that men in the country have been circulating 
rumors to the effect that the government is instigating the strikes. 
I leave to these men themselves to choose whether they are to 
appear as criminal slanderers or as fools. 

*'If you had a government desirous of concluding a peace dif- 
ferent from that desired by the majority of the population, if you 
had a government seeking to prolong the war for purposes of con- 
quest, one might understand a conflict between the government and 
the country. But since the government desires precisely the same 
as the majority of the people — that is to say, the speedy settlement of 
an honorable peace without annexationist aims — then it is madness 
to attack that government from behind, to interfere with its freedom 
of action and hamper its movements. Those who do so are fighting, 
not against the government; they are fighting blindly against the 
people they pretend to serve and against themselves. 

"As for yourselves, gentlemen, it is not only your right, but your 
duty, to choose between the following alternatives; either you trust 
me to proceed with the peace negotiations, and in that case you must 
help me, or you do not trust me, and in that case you must depose 
me. I am confident that I have the support of the majority of the 
Hungarian delegation. The Hungarian Committee has given me a 
vote of confidence. If there is any doubt as to the same here, then 
the matter is clear enough. The question of a vote of confidence 
must be brought up and put to the vote; if I then have the majority 
against me I shall at once take the consequences. No one of those 
who are anxious to secure my removal will be more pleased than 
myself; indeed, far less so. Nothing induces me now to retain my 
office but the sense of duty, which constrains me to remain as long 
as I have the confidence of the Emperor and the majority of the 
delegations. A soldier with any sense of decency does not desert. 
But no Minister for Foreign Affairs could conduct negotiations of 
this importance unless he knows, and all the world as well, that he is 
endowed with the confidence of the majority among the constitu- 
tional representative bodies. There can be no half measures here. 
You have this confidence or you have not. You must assist me or 
depose me; there is no other way. I have no more to say." 

V ^ 


The Austro-Hungarian government entered upon the peace nego- 
tiations at Brest-Litovsk with the object of arriving as quickly as 


possible at a peace compact which, if it did not, as we hoped, lead 
to a general peace, should at least secure order in the east. The 
draft of a preUminary peace was sent to Brest containing the 
following points: 

1. Cessation of hostilities; if general peace should not be con- 
cluded, then neither of the present contracting parties to afford any 
support to the enemies of the other. 

2. No surrender of territory; Poland, Livonia, and Courland 
retaining the right of determining their own destiny for the future. 

3. No indemnity for costs of war or damages due to military 

4. Cessation of economical war and reparation of damages sus- 
tained by private persons through the economical war. 

5. Resumption of commercial intercourse and the same provision- 
ally on the basis of the old commercial treaty and twenty years' 
preference subject to restriction in respect of any custom^s union 
with neighboring countries. 

6. Mutual assistance in raw materials and industrial articles. 

A further point was contemplated, dealing with the evacuation of 
the occupied areas, but the formulation of this had to be postponed 
until after consultation with the German Supreme Military Com- 
mand, whose co-operation was here required, owing to the mingling of 
German and Austro-Hungarian troops on the Russian front. The 
Army Command has indicated a period of at least six months as 
necessary for the evacuation. 

In discussing this draft with the German delegates two points in 
particular were found to present great difficulty. One was that of 
evacuation. The German Army Command declared categorically 
that no evacuation of the occupied districts could be thought of until 
after conclusion of the general peace. The second difficulty arose in 
connection with the question as to treatment of the occupied dis- 
tricts. Germany insisted that in the peace treaty with Russia it 
should be simply stated that Russia had conceded to the peoples 
within its territory the right of self-determination, and that the 
nations in question had already availed themselves of that right. 
The plain standpoint laid down in our draft we were unable to carry 
through, although it was shared by the other allies. However, in 
formulating the answer sent on December 25, 19 16, to the Russian 
peace proposals a compromise was, after persistent efforts on our 
part, ultimately arrived at which at least prevented the full adoption 
of the divergent German point of view on these two points. In the 
matter of evacuation the Germans agreed that the withdrawal of 
certain bodies of troops before the general peace might be discussed. 

Appendix 345 

In the matter of annexations a satisfactory manner of formulating 
this was found, making it appHcable only in the event of general 
peace. Had the Entente then been disposed to make peace then the 
principle of ''no annexations" would have succeeded throughout. 

Even allowing for the conciliatory form given through our en- 
endeavors to this answer by the Four Powers to the Russian pro- 
posals, the German Headquarters evinced extreme indignation. 
Several highly outspoken telegrams from the German Supreme 
Command to the German delegates prove this. The head of the 
German delegation came near to being recalled on this account, 
and if this had been done it is likely that German foreign policy 
would have been placed in the hands of a firm adherent of the 
sternest military views. As this, however, could only have had 
an unfavorable effect on the further progress of the negotiations, 
we were obliged to do all in our power to retain Herr Kiihlmann. 
With this end in view he was informed and invited to advise Berlin 
that if Germany persisted in its harsh policy Austria-Hungary 
would be compelled to conclude a separate peace with Russia. 
This declaration on the part of the Minister for Foreign Affairs did 
not fail to create a certain impression in Berlin, and was largely 
responsible for the fact that Kiihlmann was able to remain. 

Kiihlmann's difficult position and his desire to strengthen it ren- 
dered the discussion of the territorial questions, which were first offi- 
cially touched upon on December 27th, but had been already taken 
up in private meetings with the Russian delegates, a particularly 
awkward matter. Germany insisted that the then Russian front 
was not to be evacuated until six months after the general peace. 
Russia was disposed to agree to this, but demanded, on the other 
hand, that the fate of Poland was not to be decided until after 
evacuation. Against this the Germans were inclined to give up their 
original standpoint to the effect that the populations of occupied 
territories had already availed themselves of the right of self-deter- 
mination conceded, and allow a new inquiry to be made among the 
population, but insisted that this should be done during the occupa- 
tion. No solution could be arrived at on this point, though Austria- 
Hungary made repeated efforts at mediation. The negotiations 
had arrived at this stage when they were first interrupted on 
December 29th. 

On resuming the negotiations on Jariuary 6th the situation was little 
changed. Kiihlmann's position was at any rate somewhat firmer 
than before, albeit only at the cost of some concessions to the Ger- 
man military party. Under these circumstances the negotiations, 
in which Trotzky now took part as spokesman for the Russians, led 


only to altogether fruitless theoretical discussions and the right of 
self-determination, which could not bring about any lessening of the 
distance between the two firmly maintained points of view. In 
order to get the proceedings out of this deadlock further endeavors 
were made on the part of Austria to arrive at a compromise between 
the German and Russian standpoints, the more so as it was generally, 
and especially in the case of Poland, desirable to solve the terri- 
torial question on the basis of complete self-determination. Our 
proposals to the German delegates were to the effect that the 
Russian standpoint should so far be met as to allow the plebiscite 
demanded by the Russians, this to be taken, as the Germans 
insisted should be the case, during the German occupation, but with 
extensive guaranties for free expression of the will of the people. 
On this point we had long discussions with the German delegates, 
based on detailed drafts prepared by us. 

Our endeavors here, however, were again unsuccessful. Cir- 
cumstances arising at the time in our own country were responsible 
for this, as also for the result of the negotiations which had in the 
mean time been commenced with the Ukrainian delegates. These 
last had, at the first discussion, declined to treat with any Polish 
representatives, and demanded the concession of the entire Cholm 
territory, and, in a more guarded fashion, the cession of eastern 
Galicia and the Ukrainian part of northeastern Hungary, and in 
consequence of which the negotiations were on the point of being 
broken off. At this stage a food crisis broke out in Austria to an 
extent of which the Ministry of Foreign Affairs was hitherto una- 
ware, threatening Vienna in particular with the danger of being in a 
few days devoid of flour altogether. Almost immediately after this 
came a strike movement of threatening proportions. These events 
at home weakened the position of the Foreign Minister both as 
regards his attitude toward the German allies and toward the 
opposing parties in the negotiations — with both of which he was 
then in conflict — and this, at a most critical moment, to a degree 
that can hardly be appreciated from a distance. He was required 
to exert pressure upon Germany, and was now forced, not merely 
to ask, but to entreat Germany's aid in sending supplies of food, 
or Vienna would within a few days be in the throes of a catastrophe. 
With the enemy, on the other hand, he was forced, owing to the 
situation at home, to strive for a settlement of peace that should be 
favorable to Austria, in spite of the fact that our food situation 
and our labor troubles were well known to that enemy. 

This complete alteration of the position changed the whole basis 
and tactics of the Foreign Minister's proceedings. He had to obtain 


the supplies of grain asked for from Germany and thus to diminish 
poHtical pressure on that country; on the other hand he had to 
persuade the Soviet delegates to continue negotiations, and finally 
to arrive at a settlement of peace under the most acceptable con- 
ditions possible with the Ukraine, which would, if possible, put an 
end to the still serious difficulties of the food situation. 

Under these circumstances it was impossible now to work on the 
German delegates by talking of Austria-Hungary's concluding a 
separate peace with Russia, as this would have imperiled the chance 
of lood-suppHes from Germany — the more so as the representative 
of the German Army Command had declared that it was immaterial 
whether Austria-Hungary made peace or not. Germany would in 
any case march on Pertersburg if the Russian government did not 
give way. On the other hand, however, the Foreign Minister pre- 
vailed on the leader of the Russian delegation to postpone the 
carrying out of the intentions of his government — to the effect 
that the Russian delegation, owing to lack of good faith on the part 
of German- Austro-Hungarian negotiators, should be recalled. 

At the same time the negotiations with the Ukrainian delegation 
were continued. By means of lengthy and wearisome conferences 
we succeeded in bringing their demands to a footing which might 
just possibly be acceptable, and gaining their agreement to a clause 
whereby Ukraine undertook to deliver at least one million tons of 
grain by August, 1918. As to the demand for the Cholm territory, 
which we had wished to have relegated to the negotiations with 
Poland, the Ukrainian delegates refused to give way on this point 
and were evidently supported by General Hoffmann. Altogether 
the German miUtary party seemed much inclined to support 
Ukrainian demands and extremely indisposed to accede to Polish 
claims, so that we were unable to obtain the admission of Polish 
representatives to the proceedings, though we had frequently asked 
for this. A further difficulty in the way of this was the fact that 
Trotzky himself was unwilling to recognize the Pohsh party as hav- 
ing equal rights here. The only result obtainable was that the 
Ukrainians should restrict their claims on the Cholm territory to 
those parts inhabited by Ukrainian majority and accept a revision 
of the frontier line, as yet only roughly laid down, according to the 
finding of a mixed commission and the wishes of the population — i. e., 
the principle of national boundaries under international protection. 
The Ukrainian delegates renounced all territorial claims against the 
Monarchy, but demanded from us on the other hand a guaranty 
as to the autonomous development of their co-nationals in Galicia. 
With regard to these two weighty concessions, the Foreign Minister 


declared that they could only be granted on the condition that the 
Ukraine fulfilled the obligation it had undertaken as to delivery of 
grain, the deliveries being made at the appointed times; he further 
demanded that the obligations on both sides should be reciprocal — 
i.e., that the failure of one party to comply therewith should release 
the other. The formulation of these points, which met with the 
greatest difficulties on the part of Ukraine, was postponed to a 
later date. 

At this stage of the proceedings a new pause occurred to give the 
separate delegates time to advise their governments as to the results 
hitherto attained and receive their final instructions. The Foreign 
Minister returned to Vienna and reported the state of the negotia- 
tions to the proper quarters. In the course of these deliberations 
his policy of concluding peace with Russia and Ukraine on the 
basis of the concessions proposed was agreed to. Another question 
dealt with at the same time was whether the Monarchy should, in 
case of extreme necessity, conclude a separate peace with Russia if 
the negotiations with that state should threaten to come to nothing 
on account of Germany's demands. This question was, after full 
consideration of all grounds to the contrary, answered in thesi in 
the affirmative, as the state of affairs at home apparently left no 

On resuming the negotiations at Brest-Litovsk further endeavors 
were made to persuade Germany to give way somewhat by pointing 
out what would be the consequence of its obstinate attitude. In 
the course of the deliberations on this point with Herr Kiihlmann 
we succeeded after great difficulty in obtaining the agreement of 
the German delegates to a final attempt at compromise, to be under- 
taken by the Foreign Minister. The proposals for this compromise 
were based on the following considerations: 

For months past conflicting views had been expressed as to: 

1. Whether in the territories where constitutional alterations were 
to be made owing to the war the right of self-determination should 
be taken as already exercised, or whether a plebiscite should be 
taken first; 

2. Whether such plebiscite, if taken, should be addressed to a 
constituent body or in the form of a referendum to the people direct; 

3. Whether this should be done before or after evacuation; and 

4. In what manner it was to be organized (by general franchise, 
by a vote of the nobles, etc.). It would be advisable, and would 
also be in accordance with the principles adopted by Russia, to 
leave the decision on all these points to the people themselves, and 
deliver thern over to the "temporary self-administrative body,". 


which should, also according to the Russian proposal (Kameneff), 
be introduced at once. The whole of the peace negotiations could 
then be concentrated upon a single point: the question as to the 
composition of this temporary body. Here, however, a compromise 
could be arrived at, as Russia could agree that the already existent 
bodies set in the foreground by Germany should be allowed to 
express a part of the will of the people, Germany agreeing that these 
bodies should, during the occupation, be supplemented by elements 
appointed, according to the Russian principles, by free election. 

On February yth, immediately after Herr Kiihlmann had agreed 
to mediation on this basis, the Foreign Minister saw the leader of 
the Russian delegation, Trotzky, and had a series of conversations 
with him. The idea of compromise on the lines just set forth was 
little to Trotzky's taste, and he declared that he would in any case 
protest against the handUng of the self-determination question by 
the Four Powers. On the other hand, the discussion did lead to 
some result, in that a new basis for disposing of the difficulties 
which had arisen was now found. There was to be no further 
continuance of the conflict as to whether the territorial alterations 
involved by the peace should be termed "annexations," as the 
Russian delegates wished, or "exercise of the right of self-determina- 
tion," as Germany wished; the territorial alterations were to be 
simply noted in the peace treaty ("Russia notes that . . ."). 
Trotzky, however, made his acquiescence to the conclusion of such 
a compact subject to two conditions: one being that the Moon 
Sound Islands and the Baltic ports should remain with Russia; the 
other that Germany and Austria-Hungary should not conclude any 
separate peace with the Ukrainian People's Republic, whose govern- 
ment was then seriously threatened by the Bolsheviks and, accord- 
ing to some reports, already overthrown by them. The Foreign 
Minister was now anxious to arrive at a compromise on this question 
also, in which he had to a certain degree the support of Herr von 
Kiihlmann, while General Hoffmann most vehemently opposed 
any further concessions. 

All these negotiations for a compromise failed to achieve their 
end, owing to the fact that Herr Kiihlmann was forced by the 
German Supreme Army Command to act promptly. Ludendorff 
declared that the negotiations with Russia must be concluded within 
three days, and when a telegram from Petersburg was picked up 
in Berlin calHng on the German army to rise in revolt Herr von 
Kiihlmann was strictly ordered not to be content with the cessions 
already agreed to, but to demand the further cession of the unoc- 
cupied territories of Livonia and Esthonia. Under such pressure 


the leader of the German delegation had not the power to compro- 
mise. We then arrive at the signing of the treaty with Ukraine, 
which had, after much trouble, been brought to an end meanwhile. 
It thus appeared as if the efforts of the Foreign Minister had proved 
fruitless. Nevertheless, he continued his discussions with Trotzky, 
but these still led to no result, owing to the fact that Trotzky, 
despite repeated questioning, persisted in leaving everything vague 
till the last moment as to whether he would, under the present 
circumstances, conclude any peace with the Four Powers at all or 
not. Not until the plenary session of February loth was this cleared 
up; Russia declared for a cessation of hostilities, but signed no 
treaty of peace. 

The situation created by this declaration offered no occasion for 
further taking up the idea of a separate peace with Russia, since 
peace seemed to have come via facH already. At a meeting on 
February loth of the diplomatic and miHtary delegates of Germany 
and Austria-Hungary to discuss the question of what was now to 
be done it was agreed unanimously, save for a single dissentient, 
that the situation arising out of Trotzky's declarations must be 
accepted. The one dissentient vote — that of General Hoffmann — 
was to the effect that Trotzky's declaration should be answered by 
declaring the armistice at an end, marching on Petersburg, and 
supporting the Ukraine openly against Russia. In the ceremonial 
final sitting, on February nth, Herr von Kiihlmann adopted the 
attitude expressed by the majority of the peace delegations, and 
set forth the same in a most impressive speech. Nevertheless, a 
few days later, as General Hoffmann had said, Germany declared 
the armistice at an end, ordered the German troops to march on 
Petersburg, and brought about the situation which led to the sign- 
ing of the peace treaty. Austria-Hungary declared that we took 
no part in this action. 



The possibility of entering upon peace negotiations with Rumania 
was considered as soon as negotiations with the Russian delegations 
at Brest-Litovsk had commenced. In order to prevent Rumania 
itself from taking part in these negotiations Germany gave the 
Rumanian government to understand that it would not treat 
with the present King and the present government at all. This 
step, however, was only intended to enable separate negotiations 
to be entered upon with Rumania, as Germany feared that the 


participation of Rumania in the Brest negotiations would imperil 
the chances of peace. Rumania's idea seemed then to be to carry 
on the war and gain the upper hand. At the end of January, 
therefore, Austria-Hungary took the initiative in order to bring 
about negotiations with Rumania. The Emperor sent Colonel 
Randa, the former Military Attache to the Rumanian government, 
to the King of Riunania, assuring him of his willingness to grant 
^Rumania honorable terms of peace. 

In connection with the peace negotiations a demand was raised 
in Hungarian quarters for a rectification of the frontier line, so as 
to prevent, or at any rate render difficult, any repetition of the 
invasion by Rumania in 1916 over the Siebenburgen, despite 
opposition on the part of the Minister for Foreign Affairs. The 
strategical frontier drawn up by the Army Command, which, by the 
way, was influenced by considerations not conducive to peace, 
followed a line involving the cession to Hungary of Turnu-Severin, 
Sinaia and several valuable petroleum districts in Moldavia. Public 
opinion in Hungary voiced even further demands. The Hungarian 
government was of opinion that the Parliament would offer the 
greatest hindrances to any peace not complying with the general 
desire in this respect, and leading Hungarian statesmen, even some 
among the Opposition parties, declared the rectification of the 
frontier to be a condition of peace sine qua non. Wekerle and 
Tisza in particular took this view. Despite this serious difference 
of opinion the Foreign Minister, in entire agreement with the 
Emperor, even before the commencement of the negotiations in the 
middle of February, took up the position that demands connected 
with the frontier fine should not offer any obstacle to the conclusion 
of peace. The rectification of the frontier should only seriously be 
insisted on as far as could be done on the basis of loyal and, for 
the future, amicable relations with Rumania. Hungary regarded 
this lenient attitude on the part of the Foreign Minister with 
increasing disapproval. We pointed out that a frontier line con- 
ceding cities and petroleum districts to Hungary would be unfor- 
tunate in every respect. From the point of view of internal 
politics, because the number of non-Hungarian inhabitants would 
be thereby increased; from the military point of view, because it 
would give rise to frontier conflicts with unreliable Rumanian fac- 
tions; and, finally, from the point of view of foreign policy, because it 
would mean annexations and the transference of population this 
way and that, rendering friendly relations with Rumania an impos- 
sibility. Nevertheless, it would be necessary for a time to hold 
fast by the frontier line as originally conceived, so that the point 


could be used to bring about the establishment in Rumania of 
a regime amicably disposed toward the Central Powers. The 
Foreign Minister was particularly anxious to see a Marghiloman 
Cabinet formed, inaugurating a policy friendly to ourselves. He 
believed that with such a Cabinet it would be easier to arrive at 
a peace of mutual understanding, and was also resolved to render 
possible such a peace by extensive concessions, especially by giving 
his diplomatic support in the Bessarabian question. He informed 
Marghiloman also in writing that he would be prepared to grant 
important concessions to a Cabinet of which he, Marghiloman, was 
the head, in particular as regards the cession of inhabited places 
such as Tumu-Severin and Ocna, on which points he was willing to 
give way. When the Marghiloman Cabinet was formed the Austro- 
Hungarian demands in respect of the frontier line would, despite 
active opposition on the part of the Hungarian government, be 
reduced almost by half. The negotiations with Rumania were par- 
ticularly difficult in regard to the question of two places, Azuga and 
Busteni. On March 24th Count Czemin prepared to terminate these 
negotiations, declaring that he was ready to renounce all claim to 
Azuga and Busteni and halve his demands as to the much-debated 
Lotru district, provided Marghiloman were willing to arrange the 
frontier question on this basis. Marghiloman declared himself 
satisfied with this compromise. On the next day, however, it was 
nevertheless rejected by the Hungarian government, and not until 
after further telegraphic communication with the Emperor and 
Wekerle was the assent of all competent authorities obtained. This 
had, indeed, been widely considered in Hungarian circles as an 

Another Austro-Hungarian demand which played some part in 
the Bukharest negotiations was in connection with the plan of an 
economical alliance between Austria-Hungary and Rumania. This 
was of especial interest to the Austrian government, whereas the 
frontier question, albeit in some degree affecting Austria as well, was 
a matter of indifference to this government, which, as a matter of 
fact, did not sympathize with the demands at all. The plan for an 
economical alliance, however, met with opposition in Hungary. 
Immediately before the commencement of the Bukharest negotia- 
tions an attempt was made to overcome this opposition on the part 
of the Hungarian government and secure its adherence to the idea of 
an economical alliance with Rumania — at any rate, conditionally 
upon the conclusion of a customs alliance with Germany as planned. 
It proved impossible, however, at the time to obtain this assent. 
The Hungarian government reserved the right of considering the 


question later on, and on March 8th instructed their representatives 
at Bukharest that they must dissent from the plan, as the future 
economical alliance with Germany was a matter beyond present 
consideration. Consequently this question could play no part at 
first in the peace negotiations, and all that could be done was to 
sound the leading Rumanian personages in a purely private manner 
as to the attitude they would adopt toward such a proposal. The 
idea was, generally speaking, well received by Rumania, and the 
prevalent opinion was that such an alliance would be distinctly 
advisable from Rumania's point of view. A further attempt was 
therefore made, during the pause in the peace negotiations in the 
east, to overcome the opposition of the Hungarian government; 
these deliberations were, however, not concluded when the Minister 
for Foreign Affairs resigned his office. 

Germany had, even before the commencement of negotiations in 
Bukharest, considered the question of imposing on Rumania, when 
treating for peace, a series of obligations especially in connection 
with the economical relations amounting to a kind of indirect war 
indemnity. It was also contemplated that the occupation of 
Wallachia should be maintained for five or six years after the con- 
clusion of peace. Rumania should then give up its petroleum 
districts, its railways, harbors, and domains to German companies 
as their property, and submit itself to a permanent financial control. 
Austria-Hungary opposed these demands from the first on the 
grounds that no friendly relations could ever be expected to exist 
with a Rumania which had been economically plundered to such 
a complete extent; and Austria-Hungary was obliged to maintain 
amicable relations with Rumania. 

This standpoint was most emphatically set forth, and not without 
some success, on February 5th, at a conference with the Reichs- 
kansler. In the middle of February the Emperor sent a personal 
message to the German Emperor cautioning him against this plan, 
which might prove an obstacle in the way of peace. Rumania was 
not advised of these demands until comparatively late in the negotia- 
tions, after the appointment of Marghiloman. Until then the 
questions involved gave rise to constant discussion between Ger- 
many and Austria-Hungary, the latter throughout endeavoring 
to reduce the German demands, not only with a view to arriving at 
a peace of mutual imderstanding, but also because, if Germany 
gained a footing in Rumania on the terms originally contemplated, 
Austro-Hungarian economical interests must inevitably suffer 
thereby. The demands originally formulated with regard to the 
Rumanian railways and domains were then relinquished by Ger* 


many, and the plan of a cession of the Rumanian harbors was altered 
so as to amount to the establishment of a Rumanian-German- 
Austro-Hungarian harbor company, which, however, eventually 
came to nothing. The petroleum question, too, was reduced from 
a cession to a ninety years' tenure of the state petroleum districts 
and the formation of a monopoly trading company for petroieum 
under German management. Finally, an economical arrangement 
was prepared which should secure the agricultural products of 
Rumania to the Central Powers for a series of years. The idea of a 
permanent German control of the Rumanian finances was also 
relinquished, owing to Austro-Hungarian opposition. The negotia- 
tions with Ivlarghiloman and his representatives on these questions 
made a very lengthy business. In the economical questions especi- 
ally there was great difference of opinion on the subject of prices, 
which was not disposed of until the last moment before the drawing 
up of the treaty on March 28th, and then only by adopting the 
Rumanian standpoint. On the petroleum question, where the 
differences were particularly acute, agreement was finally arrived 
at, in the face of the extreme views of the German economical 
representative, on the one hand, and the Rumanian Foreign Minister, 
Arion, on the other, by a compromise, according to which further 
negotiations were to be held in particular with regard to the trade 
monopoly for petroleum, and the original draft was only to apply 
when such negotiations failed to lead to any result. 

The German demands as to extension of the period of occupation 
for five or six years after the general peace likewise played a great 
part at several stages of the negotiations, and were from the first 
stoutly opposed by Austria-Hungary. We endeavored to bring 
about an arrangement by which, on the conclusion of peace, 
Rumania should have all legislative and executive power restored, 
being subject only to a certain right of control in respect of a limited 
nimiber of points, but not beyond the general peace. In support 
of this proposal the Foreign Minister pointed out in particular that 
the establishment of a Rumanian Ministry amicably disposed 
toward ourselves would be an impossibility (the Averescu Ministry 
was then still in power) if we were to hold Rumania permanently 
under our yoke. We should far rather use every endeavor to 
obtain what could be obtained from Rumania through the mediimi 
of such politicians in that country as were disposed to follow a 
policy of friendly relations with the Central Powers. The main 
object of our policy to get such men into power in Rumania, and 
enable them to remain in the government, would be rendered 
unattainable, if too severe measures were adopted. We might gain 


something thereby for a few years, but it would mean losing every- 
thing in the future. And we succeeded also in convincing the 
German Secretary of State, Kiihlmann, of the inadvisability of the 
demands in respect of occupation, which were particularly voiced by 
the German Army Council. As a matter of fact, after the retirement 
of Averescu, Marghiloman declared that these demands would make 
it impossible for him to form a Cabinet at all. And when he had 
been informed, from German sources, that the German Supreme 
Army Command insisted on these terms, he only agreed to form a 
Cabinet on the assurance of the Austrian Foreign Minister that a 
solution of the occupation problem would be found. In this question 
also we did ultimately succeed in coming to agreement with Rumania. 

One of the decisive points in the conclusion of peace with Rumania 
was, finally, the cession of the Dobrudsha, on which Bulgaria 
insisted with such violence that it was impossible to avoid it. 
The ultimatum which preceded the preliminary Treaty of Buftea 
had also to be altered chiefly on the Dobrudsha question, as Bulgaria 
was already talking of the ingratitude of the Central Powers, of 
how Bulgaria had been disillusioned, and of the evil effects this 
disillusionment would have on the subsequent conduct of the war. 
All that Count Czernin could do was to obtain a guaranty that 
Rumania, in case of cession of the Dobrudsha, should at least be 
granted a sure way to the harbor of Kustendje. In the main the 
Dobrudsha question was decided at Buftea. When, later, Bulgaria 
expressed a desire to interpret the wording of the preliminary 
treaty by which the Dobrudsha "as far as the Danube" was to be 
given up in such a sense as to embrace the whole of the territory 
up to the northernmost branch (the Kilia branch) of the Danube, 
this demand was most emphatically opposed both by Germany 
and Austria-Hungary, and it was distinctly laid down in the peace 
treaty that only the Dobrudsha as far as the St. George's branch 
was to be ceded. This decision again led to bad feeling in Bul- 
garia, but was unavoidable, as further demands here would probably 
have upset the preliminary peace again. 

The proceedings had reached this stage when Count Czernin 
resigned his office. 


Wilson's fourteen points 

I. Open covenants of peace openly arrived at, after which there 
shall be no private international understanding of any kind, but 
diplomacy shall proceed always frankly and in the public view. 


II. Absolute freedom of navigation upon the seas outside terri- 
torial waters alike in peace and in war, except as the seas may be 
closed in whole or in part by international action for the enforcement 
of international covenants. 

III. The removal, so far as possible, of all economic barriers and 
the establishment of an equality of trade conditions among all the 
nations consenting to the peace and associating themselves for its 

IV. Adequate guaranties given and taken that national arma- 
ments will be reduced to the lowest point consistent with domestic 

V. A free, open-minded, and absolutely impartial adjustment 
of all colonial claims based upon a strict observance of the principle 
that in determining all such questions of sovereignty the interests 
of the populations concerned must have equal weight with the 
equitable claims of the government whose title is to be determined. 

VI. The evacuation of all Russian territory, and such a settle- 
ment of all questions affecting Russia as will secure the best and 
freest co-operation of the other nations of the world in obtaining 
for her an unhampered and unembarrassed opportunity for the inde- 
pendent determination of her own political development and 
national policy, and assure her of a sincere welcome into the society 
of free nations imder institutions of her own choosing; and more 
than a welcome assistance also of every kind that she may need 
and may herself desire. The treatment accorded Russia by her 
sister nations in the months to come will be the acid test of their 
good will, of their comprehension of her needs as distinguished from 
their own interests, and of their intelligent and unselfish sympathy. 

VII. Belgium, the whole world will agree, must be evacuated and 
restored without any attempt to limit the sovereignty which she 
enjoys in common with all other free nations. No other single act 
will serve as this will serve to restore confidence among the nations 
in the laws which they have themselves set and determined for the 
government of their relations with one another. Without this 
healing act the whole structure and validity of international law 
is forever impaired. 

VIII. All French territory should be freed, and the invaded 
portions restored, and the wrong done to France by Prussia in 187 1 
in the matter of Alsace-Lorraine, which has unsettled the peace of 
the world for nearly fifty years, should be righted in order that peace 
may once more be made secure in the interests of all. 

IX. A readjustment of the frontiers of Italy should be effected 
along clearly recognizable lines of nationaUty. 


X. The peoples of Austria-Hungary, whose place among the 
nations we wish to see safeguarded and assured, should be accorded 
the first opportunity of autonomous development. 

XI. Rumania, Serbia, and Monetengro should be evacuated, 
occupied territories restored, Serbia accorded free and secure access 
to the sea, and the relations of the several Balkan states to one 
another determined by friendly counsel along historically estabUshed 
lines of allegiance and nationality, and international guaranties of 
the political and economic independence and territorial integrity of 
the several Balkan states should be entered into. 

XII. The Turkish portions of the present Ottoman Empire should 
be assured a secure sovereignty, but the other nationalities which are 
now imder Turkish rule should be assured an undoubted security of 
life and an absolutely unmolested opportunity of autonomous 
development, and the Dardanelles should be permanently opened 
as a free passage to the ships and commerce of all nations imder 
international guaranties. 

XIII. An independent Polish state should be erected which 
should include the territories inhabited by indisputably Polish 
populations, which should be assured a free and secure access to 
the sea, and whose political and economic independence and ter- 
ritorial integrity should be guaranteed by international covenant. 

XIV. A general association of nations must be formed under 
specific covenants for the purpose of affording mutual guaranties 
of political independence and territorial integrity to great and small 
states alike. 



Speech delivered December ii, 1918 

Gentlemen, — In rising now to speak of our policy during the 
war it is my hope that I may thereby help to bring the truth to 
light. We are Hving in a time of excitement. After four years of 
war, the bloodiest and most determined war the world has ever 
seen, and in the midst of the greatest revolution ever known, this 
excitement is only too easily understood. But the result of this 
excitement is that all those nmiors which go flying about mingling 
truth and falsehood together, end by misleading the public. It is 
imquestionably necessary to arrive at a clear understanding. The 

public has a right to know what has really happened, it has the right 


to know why we did not succeed in attaining the peace we had so 
longed for, it has a right to know whether, and if so where, any 
neglect can be pointed out, or whether it was the overwhelming 
power of circumstances which had led our policy to take the course 
it did. The new arrangement of relations between ourselves and 
Germany will make an end of all secret proceedings. The day will 
come then, when, fortunately, all that has hitherto been hidden will 
be made clear. As, however, I do not know when all this will be 
made public, I am grateful for the opportunity of lifting the veil 
to-day from certain hitherto unknown events. In treating of this 
theme I will refrain from touching upon those constitutional factors 
which once counted for so much, but which do so no longer. I do 
so because it seems to me unfair to import into the discussion persons 
who are now paying heavily for what they may have done and who 
are unable to defend themselves. And I must pay this honorable 
tribute to the Austro-Hungarian Press, that it has on the whole 
sought to spare the former Emperor as far as possible. There are, 
of course, exceptions — exceptiones firmant regulam. There are in 
Vienna, as everywhere else, men who find it more agreeable to 
attack, the less if those whom they are attacking are able to defend 
themselves. But, believe me, gentlemen, those who think thus are 
not the bravest, not the best, nor the most reliable; and we may 
be glad that they form so insignificant a minority. 

But, to come to the point. Before passing on to a consideration 
of the various phases of the work for peace, I should like to point 
out two things: firstly, that since the entry of Italy and Rumania 
into the war, and especially since the entry of America, a "victorious 
peace" on our part has been a Utopian idea, a Utopia which, 
unfortimately, was throughout cherished by the German military 
party; and, secondly, that we have never received any offer of peace 
from the Entente. On several occasions peace feelers were put 
forward between representatives of the Entente and our own; 
unfortunately, however, these never led to any concrete conditions. 
We often had the impression that we might conclude a separate 
peace without Germany, but we were never told the concrete con- 
ditions upon which Germany, on its part, could make peace; and, 
in particular, we were never informed that Germany would be 
allowed to retain its possessions as before the war, in consequence 
of which we were left in the position of having to fight a war of 
defense for Germany. We were compelled by our treaty to a com- 
mon defense of the pre-war possessions, and since the Entente 
never declared its willingness to treat with a Germany which wished 
for no annexations, since the Entente constantly declared its inten- 


tion of annihilating Germany, we were forced to defend Germany, 
and our position in Berlin was rendered unspeakably more difficult. 
We ourselves, also, were never given any assurance that we should be 
allowed to retain our former possessions; but in our case the desire 
for peace was so strong that we would have made territorial con- 
cessions if we had been able thereby to secure general peace. This, 
however, was not the case. Take Italy, for instance, which was 
primarily at war with ourselves and not with Germany. If we had 
offered Italy concessions, however great, if we had offered all that 
Italy has now taken possession of, even then it could not have made 
peace, being bound by duty to its allies and by circumstances not 
to make peace until England and France made peace with Germany. 

When, then, peace by sacrifice was the only peace attainable, 
obviously, as a matter of principle, there were two ways of reaching 
that end. One, a general peace — i. e, including Germany— and the 
other a separate peace. Of the overwhelming difficulties attending 
the former course I will speak later; at present a few words on the 
question of separate peace. 

I myself would never have made a separate peace. I have never, 
not even in the hour of disillusionment — I may say of despair at 
my inability to lead the policy of Berlin into wiser channels — even 
in such hours, I say, I have never forgotten that our alliance with 
the German Empire was no ordinary alliance, no such alliance as 
may be contracted by two emperors or two governments, and can 
easily be broken, but an aUiance of blood, a blood-brotherhood 
between the ten million Austro-Germans and the seventy million of 
the Empire, which could not be broken. And I have never forgotten 
that the military party in power at that time in Germany were not 
the German people, and that we had allied ourselves with the Ger- 
man people, and not with a few leading men. But I will not deny 
that in the moments when I saw my policy could not be realized 
I did ventilate the idea of suggesting to the Emperor the appoint- 
ment, in my stead, of one of those men who saw salvation in a separa- 
tion from Germany. But again and again I reUnquished this idea, 
being firmly convinced that separate peace was a sheer impossi- 
bility. The Monarchy lay like a block between Germany and the 
Balkans. Germany had great masses of troops there from which 
it could not be cut off; it was procuring oil and grain from, the Bal- 
kans; if we were to interpose between it and the Balkans we 
should be striking at its most sensitive vital nerve. Moreover, the 
Entente would naturally have demanded first of all that we join 
in the blockade, and finally our secession would automatically have 
Involved also that of Bulgaria and Turkey. Had we withdrawn, 


Germany would have been unable to carry on the war. In such 
a situation there can be no possibility of doubt but that the German 
Army Command would have flung several divisions against Bohemia 
and the Tyrol, meting out to us the same fate which had previously 
befallen Rumania. The Monarchy, Bohemia in particular, would 
at once have become a scene of war. But even this is not all. 
Internally, such a step would at once have led to civil war. The 
Germans of Austria would never have turned against their brothers, 
and the Hungarians — Tisza's Hungarians — would never have lent 
their aid to such a policy. We had begun the war in common, afid 
we could not end it save in common. For us there was no way out 
of the war; we could only choose between fighting with Germany 
against the Entente, or fighting with the Entente against Germany 
until Germany herself gave way. A slight foretaste of what would 
have happened was given us through the separatist steps taken by 
Andrassy at the last moment. This utterly defeated, already 
annihilated and prostrate Germany had yet the power to fling troops 
toward the Tyrol, and had not the revolution overwhelmed all 
Germany like a conflagration, smothering the war itself, I am 
not sure but that the Tyrol might at the last moment have been 
harried by war. And, gentlemen, I have more to say. The experi- 
ment of separate peace would not only have involved us in a civil 
war, not only brought the war into our own country, but even then 
the final outcome v/ould have been much the same. The dissolu- 
tion of the Monarchy into its component national parts was postu- 
lated throughout by the Entente. I need only refer to the Con- 
ference of London. But whether the state be dissolved by way of 
reward to the people or by way of punishment to the state makes 
little difference; the effect is the same. In this case also a "Ger- 
man Austria" would have arisen, and in such a development it 
would have been hard for the German-Austrian people to take 
up an attitude which rendered them allies of the Entente. In my 
own case, as Minister of the imperial and royal government, 
it Was my duty also to consider dynastic interests, and I never 
lost sight of that obligation. But I believe that in this respect 
also the end would have been the same. In particular the dis- 
solution of the Monarchy into its national elements by legal means, 
against the opposition of the Germans and Hungarians, would have 
been a complete impossibility. And the Germans in Austria would 
never have forgiven the Crown if it had entered upon a war with 
Germany; the Emperor would have been constantly encountering 
the powerful republican tendencies of the Czechs, and he would 
have been in constant conflict with the King of Serbia over the 

APPENDIX ' 361' 

South-Slav question, an ally being naturally nearer to the Entente 
than the Hapsburgers. And, finally, the Hungarians would never 
have forgiven the Emperor if he had freely conceded extensive 
territories to Bohemia and to the South-Slav state; I believe, then, 
that in this confusion the Crown would have fallen, as it has done in 
fact. A separate peace was a sheer impossibility. There remained 
the second way — to make peace jointly with Germany. Before 
going into the difficulties which rendered this way impossible I must 
briefly point out wherein lay our great dependence upon Germany. 
First of all, in military respect. Again and again we were forced to 
rely on aid from Germany. In Rumania, in Italy, in Serbia, and 
in Russia we were victorious with the Germans beside us. We 
were in the position of a poor relative living by the grace of a rich 
kinsman. But it is impossible to play the mendicant and the politi- 
cal adviser at the same time, particularly when the other party is a 
Prussian officer. In the second place, we were dependent upon 
Germany, owing to the state of our food-supply. Again and again 
we were here also forced to beg for help from Germany, because 
the complete disorganization of our own administration had brought 
us to the most desperate straits. We were forced to this by the 
hunger blockade established, on the one hand, by Hungary, and on 
the other by the official authorities and their central depots. I 
remember how, when I myself was in the midst of a violent conflict 
with the German delegates at Brest-Litovsk, I received orders from 
Vienna to bow the knee to Berlin and beg for food. You can 
imagine, gentlemen, for yourselves how such a state of things must 
weaken a Minister's hands. And, thirdly, our dependence was due 
to the state of our finances. In order to keep up our credit we were 
drawing a hundred million marks a month from Germany, a sum 
which during the course of the war has grown to over four milliards ; 
and this money was as urgently needed as were the German divisions 
and the German bread. And, despite this position of dependence, 
the only way to arrive at peace was by leading Germany into our 
own political course; that is to say, persuading Germany to conclude 
a peace involving sacrifice. The situation all through was simply 
this: that any momentary military success might enable us to propose 
terms of peace which, while entailing considerable loss to ourselves, 
had just a chance of being accepted by the enemy. The German 
military party, on the other hand, Increased their demands with 
every victory, and it was more hopeless than ever, after their great 
successes, to persuade them to adopt a policy of renunciation. I 
think, by the way, that there was a single moment in the history 
of this war when such an action would have had some prospect of 


success. I refer to the famous battle of Gorlitz. Then, with the 
Russian army in flight, the Russian forts falling like houses of cards, 
many among our enemies changed their point of view. I was at 
that time still our representative in Rumania. Majorescu was then 
not disinclined to side with us actively, and the Rumanian army, 
moved forward toward Bessarabia, could have been hot on the heels 
of the flying Russians, and might, according to all human calcula- 
tions, have brought about a complete debacle. It is not unlikely 
that the collapse which later took place in Russia might have come 
about then, and after a success of that nature, with no "America" 
as yet on the horizon, we might perhaps have brought the war to 
an end. Two things, however, were required: in the first place, 
the Rumanians demanded, as the price of their co-operation, a 
rectification of the Hungarian frontier, and this first condition was 
flatly refused by Hungary; the second condition, which naturally 
then did not come into question at all, would have been that we 
should even then, after such a success, have proved strong enough 
to bear a peace with sacrifice. We were not called upon to agree 
to this, but the second requirement would undoubtedly have been 
refused by Germany, just as the first had been by Hungary. I do 
not positively assert that it would have been possible in this or any 
other case to arrive at, but I do positively maintain that during my 
period of office such a peace by sacrifice was the utmost we and Ger- 
many could have attained. The future will show what superhuman 
efforts we have made to induce Germany to give way. That all 
proved fruitless was not the fault of the German people, nor was 
it, in my opinion, the fault of the German Emperor, but that of the 
leaders of the German miHtary party, which had attained such 
enormous power in the country. Every one in Wilhelmstrasse, from 
Bethmann to Kiihlmann, wanted peace; but they could not get it 
simply because the military party got rid of every one who ventured 
to act otherwise than as they wished. This also applies to Beth- 
mann and Kiihlmann. The Pan-Germanists, under the leadership 
of the military party, could not understand that it was possible to 
die through being victorious, that victories are worthless when they 
do not lead to peace, that territories held in an iron grasp as "secu- 
rity" are valueless securities as long as the opposing party cannot be 
forced to redeem them. There were various shades of this Pan- 
Germanism. One section demanded the annexation of parts of 
Belgium and France, with an indemnity of milliards; others were 
less exorbitant, but all were agreed that peace could only be con- 
cluded with an extension of German possessions. It was the easiest 
thing in the world to get on well with the German mihtary party as 


long as one believed in their fantastic ideas and took a victorious 
peace for granted, dividing up the world thereafter at will. But if 
any one attempted to look at things from the point of view of the 
real situation, and ventured to reckon with the possibility of a less 
satisfactory termination of the war, the obstacles then encountered 
were not easily surmounted. We all of us remember those speeches 
in which constant reference was always made to a "stem peace," 
a "German peace," a "victorious peace." For us, then, the possi- 
biHty of a more favorable peace — I mean a peace based on mutual 
understanding — I have never believed in the possibihty of a victori- 
ous peace — would only have been acute in the case of Poland and the 
Austro-Polish question. But I cannot sufficiently emphasize the 
fact that the Austro-Polish solution never was an obstacle in the way 
of peace and could never have been so. There was only the idea 
that Austrian Poland and the former Russian Poland might be 
united and attached to the Monarchy. It was never suggested that 
such a step should be enforced against the will of Poland itself or 
against the will of the Entente. There was a time when it looked 
as if not only Poland, but also certain sections among the Entente, 
were not disinclined to agree to such a solution. 

But to return to the German military party. This had attained 
a degree of power in the state rarely equaled in history, and the 
rarity of the phenomenon was only exceeded by the suddenness of 
its terrible collapse. The most striking personality in this group 
was General Ludendorff. Ludendorff was a great man, a man of 
genius in conception, a man of indomitable energy and great gifts. 
But this man required a pohtical brake, so to speak, a political 
element in the Wilhelmstrasse capable of balancing his influence, 
and this was never found. It must fairly be admitted that the 
German generals achieved the gigantic, and there was a time when 
they were looked up to by the people almost as gods. It may be 
true that all great strategists are much alike; they look to victory 
always and to nothing else. Moltke himself, perhaps, was nothing 
more, but he had a Bismarck to maintain equilibrium. We had 
no such Bismarck, and when all is said and done it was not the 
fault of Ludendorff, or it is at any rate an excuse for him, that he 
was the only supremely powerful character in the whole of Germany, 
and that in consequence the entire policy of the country was directed 
into military channels. Ludendorff "was a great patriot, desiring 
nothing for himself, but seeking only the happiness of his country; 
a military genius, a hard man, utterly fearless — and for all that 
a misfortune in that he looked at the whole world through Potsdam 
glasses, with an altogether erroneous judgment, wrecking every 


attempt at peace which was not a peace of victory. Those 
very people who worshiped Ludendorff when he spoke of a vic- 
torious peace stone him now for that very thing; Ludendorff was 
exactly like the statesmen of England and France, who all rejected 
compromise and declared for victory alone; in this respect there 
was no difference between them. The peace of mutual understand- 
ing which I wished for was rejected on the Thames and on -the 
Seine just as by Ludendorff himself. I have said this already. 
According to the treaty it was our undoubted duty to carry on a 
defensive war to the utmost and reciprocally to defend the integrity 
of the state. It is therefore perfectly obvious that I could never 
publicly express any other view, that I was throughout forced to 
declare that we were fighting for Alsace-Lorraine just as we were 
for Trentino, that I could not relinquish German territory to the 
Entente so long as I lacked the power to persuade Germany herself 
to such a step. But, as I will show, the most strenuous endeavors 
were made in this latter direction. And I may here in parentheses 
remark that our military men throughout refrained from committing 
the error of the German generals and interfering in politics them- 
selves. It is undoubtedly to the credit of our Emperor that when- 
ever any tendency to such interference appeared he quashed it at 
once. But in particular I should point out that the Archduke 
Frederick confined his activity solely to the task of bringing about 
peace. He has rendered most valuable service in this, as also in his 
endeavors to arrive at favorable relations with Germany. 

Very shortly after taking up office I had some discussions with 
the German government which left those gentlemen perfectly aware 
of the serious nature of the situation. In April, 191 7 — eighteen 
months ago — I sent the following report to the Emperor Charles, 
which he forwarded to the Emperor William with the remark that 
he was entirely of my opinion: 

(Here follows the report in question.) 

This led to a reply from the German government, dated May gth, 
again expressing the utmost confidence in the success of the sub- 
marine campaign, declaring, it is true, their willingness in principle 
to take steps toward peace, but reprehending any such steps as 
might be calculated to give an impression of weakness. 

As to any territorial sacrifice on the part of Germany, this was 
not to be thought of. 

As will be seen from this report, however, we did not confine 
ourselves to words alone. In 191 7 we declared in Berlin that the 
Emperor Charles was prepared to permit the union of Galicia with 
Poland, and to do all that could be done to attach that state to 


Germany in the event of Germany making any sacrifices in the 
west in order to secure peace. But we were met with a non pos- 
sumus and the German answer that territorial concessions to 
France were out of the question. 

The whole of GaUcia was here involved, but I was firmly assured 
that if the plan succeeded Germany would protect the rights of the 
Ukraine; and consideration for the Ukrainians would certainly not 
have restrained me had it been a question of the highest value — of 
peace itself. 

When I perceived that the likelihood of converting Berlin to our 
views steadily diminished I had recourse to other means. The 
journey of the Socialist leaders to Stockholm will be remembered. 
It is true that the SociaHsts were not ''sent" by me; they went to 
Stockholm of their own initiative and on their own responsibility, 
but it is none the less true that I could have refused them their 
passes if I had shared the views of the Entente governments and 
of numerous gentlemen in our own country. Certainly, I was at 
the time very skeptical as to the outcome, as I already saw that 
the Entente would refuse passes to their Socialists, and consequently 
there could be nothing but a "rump" parHament in the end. But 
despite all the reproaches which I had to bear, and the argument 
that the peace-bringing Socialists would have an enormous power 
in the state to the detriment of the monarchical principle itself, I 
never for a moment hesitated to take that step, and I have never 
regretted it in itself, only that it did not succeed. It is encouraging 
to me now to read again many of the letters then received criticizing 
most brutally my so-called "SociaHstic proceedings" and to find 
that the same gentlemen who were theix so incensed at my policy 
are now adherents of a line of criticism which rnaintains that I am 
too "narrow-minded" in my choice of new means toward peace. 

It will be remembered how, in the early autumn of 191 7, the 
majority of the German Reichstag had a hard fight against the 
numerically weaker but, from their relation to the German 'Army 
Command, extremely powerful minority on the question of the reply 
to the Papal note. Here again I was no idle spectator. One of 
my friends, at my instigation, had several conversations with 
Sudekum and Erzberger, and encouraged them, by my description 
of our own position, to pass the well-known peace resolution. It 
was owing to this description of the state of affairs here that the 
two gentlemen mentioned were enabled to carry the Reichstag's 
resolution in favor of a peace by mutual understanding — the 
resolution which met with such disdain and scorn from the Pan- 
Germans and other elements. I hoped then, for a moment, to have 


gained a lasting and powerful alliance in the German Reichstag 
against the German military plans of conquest. 

And now, gentlemen, I should like to say a few words on the 
subject of that unfortunate submarine campaign which was un- 
doubtedly the beginning of the end, and to set forth the reasons 
which in this case, as in many other instances, forced us to adopt 
tactics not in accordance with our own convictions. Shortly after 
my appointment as Minister the idea of unrestricted submarine 
warfare began to take form in German minds. The principal 
advocate of this plan was Admiral Tirpitz. To the credit of the 
former Reichskansler, Bethmann-Hollweg, be it said that he was 
long opposed to the idea, and used all means and every argument 
to dissuade others from adopting so perilous a proceeding. In the 
end he was forced to give way, as was the case with all politicians 
who came in conflict with the all-powerful military party. Admiral 
Hoitzendorff came to us at that time, and the question was debated 
from every point of view in long conferences lasting for hours. My 
then Ministerial colleagues, Tisza and Clam, as well as myself, were 
entirely in agreement with Emperor Charles in rejecting the proposal, 
and the only one who then voted unreservedly in favor of it was 
Admiral Haus. It should here be noted that the principal German 
argument at that time was not the prospect of starving England 
into submission, but the suggestion that the western front could not 
be held unless the American munition-transports were sunk — that 
is to say, the case for the submarine campaign was then based 
chiefly on the point of technical military importance and nothing else. 
I myself earnestly considered the question then of separating our- 
selves from Germany on this point; with the small number of 
U-boats at our disposal it would have made but little difference 
had we on our part refrained. But another point had here to be 
considered. If the submarine campaign was to succeed in the 
northern waters it must be carried out at the same time in the 
Mediterranean. With this latter water unaffected the transports 
would have been sent via Italy, France, and Dover to England, and 
the northern U-boat campaign would have been paralyzed. But 
in order to carry on submarine war in the Adriatic we should have 
to give the Germans access to our bases, such as Pola, Cattaro, 
and Trieste, and by so doing we were de facto partaking in the 
submarine campaign ourselves. If we did not do it, then we were 
attacking Germany in the rear by hindering their submarine cam- 
paign — that is to say, it would bring us into direct conflict with 
Germany. Therefore, albeit sorely against our will, we agreed, not 
convinced by argument, but unable to act otherwise. 


And now, gentlemen, I hasten to conclude. I have but a few 
words to say as to the present. From time to time reports have 
appeared in the papers to the effect that certain gentlemen were 
preparing disturbances in Switzerland, and I myself have been 
mentioned as one of them. I am doubtful whether there is any 
truth at all in these reports; as for myself, I have not been outside 
this country for the last nine months. As, however, my contra- 
diction on this head itself appears to have given rise to further 
misunderstandings, I will give you my point of view here briefly 
and, as I hope, clearly enough. I am most strongly opposed to 
any attempt at revolt. I am convinced that any such attempt could 
only lead to civil war — a thing no one would wish to see. I am, 
therefore, of opinion that the republican government must be main- 
tained untouched until the German-Austrian people as a whole has 
taken its decision. But this can only be decided by the German 
people. Neither the Republic nor the Monarchy is in itself a dogma 
of democracy. The Kingdom of England is as democratic as 
repubhcan Switzerland. I know no country where men enjoy so 
great freedom as in England. But it is a dogma of democracy that 
the people itself must determine in what manner it will be governed, 
and I therefore repeat that the final word can only be spoken by 
the constitutional representative body. I believe that I am here 
entirely at one with the present government. There are two 
methods of ascertaining the will of the people; either candidate for 
the representative body stands for election on a monarchical or a 
republican platform, in which case the majority of the body itself 
will express the decision; or the question of monarchy or republic 
can be decided by a plebiscite. It is matter of common knowledge 
that I myself have had so serious conflicts with the ex-Kaiser that 
any co-operation between us is for all time an impossibility. No 
one can, therefore, suspect me of wishing on personal grounds to 
revert to the old regime. But I am not or.e to juggle with the 
idea of democracy, and its nature demands that the people itself 
should decide. I believe that the majority of German-Austria is 
against the old regime, and when it has expressed itself to this effect 
the furtherance of democracy is sufficiently assured. 

And with this, gentlemen, I have finished what I proposed to 
set before you. I vainly endeavored to make peace together with 
Germany, but I was not unsuccessful in my endeavors to save 
the German-Austrians from ultimately coming to armed conflict 
with Gerriiany. I can say this, and without exaggeration, that I have 
defended the German alliance as if it had been my own child, and 
I do not know what would have happened had I not done so. 


Andrassy's "extra turn" at the last moment showed the great mass 
of the pubUc how present a danger was that of war with Germany. 
Had the same experiment been made six months before it would 
have been war with Germany; would have made Austria a scene of 

There are evil times in store for the German people, but a people 
of many millions cannot perish and will not perish. The day will 
come when the wounds of this war begin to close and heal, and 
when that day comes a better future will dawn. 

The Austrian armies went forth in the hour of war to save Austria. 
They have not availed to save it. But if out of this ocean of blood 
and suffering a better, freer, and nobler world arise, then they will 
not have died in vain, all those we loved who now lie buried in cold 
alien earth ; they died for the happiness, the peace, and the future 
of the generations to come. 


Adler, Dr. Victor, a discussion 
with, 31 
and the Socialist Congress at 

Stockholm, 187 
and Trotzky, 260, 261, 262 
Adrianople, cession of, 299 
Aehrenthal, Franz Ferdinand and, 
policy on expansion, 5 
Air raids on England, cause of, 19 

their effect, 187 
Albania, and the Peace of Bukha- 
rest, 7 
Queen Elizabeth of Rumania 
and, 105 
Albrecht von Wiirttemberg, 45 
Alsace-Lorraine, Bethmann on, 84 
cession of, demanded by En- 
tente, 184 
conquest of, a curse to Ger- 
many, 17 
Emperor Charles's offer to 

Germany, 85 
France insists on restoration of, 

Germany and, 82, 177 
Ambassadors and their duties, no, 


America and the U-boat cam- 
paign, 132, 135 
enters the war, 20, 166 
rupture with Germany, 143 
ship-building program of, 323 
un preparedness for war, 138 
(C/. United States) 
American government, Count Czer- 
nin's note to, 311 ei seg_. 

Andrassy, Count, and Rumanian 
peace negotiations, 289 
declares a separate peace, 28, 29 
German Nationalist view of his 
action, 29 
Adrian at Nordbahnhof, 243 
Anti-Rumanian party and its 

leader, 87 
Arbitration, courts of, 191, 196, 

Arion, Rumanian Foreign Minis- 
ter, 354 
Armaments, pre-war fever for, 4 
Armand-Revertera negotiations, 

the, 183, 189 
Asquith, a warlike speech by, 

Austria-Hungary, a rejected pro- 
posal decides fate of, 2 
and Albania, 7 
and cession of Galicia, 163 
and question of separate peace, 

31, 183, 190 
and the U-boat campaign, 140, 

141, 167, 366 
ceases to exist, 200 
consequences of a separate 

peace, 28 
death-blow to customs dues, 

declaration on submarine war- 
fare, 311 
democratic Parliament of, 338 
.enemy's secret negotiations for 

peace, 158, 181 
food troubles and strikes in, 265, 

266, 268, 346 
her army merged into German 
army, 25 



her position before and after the 
ultimatum, 15 

heroism of her armies, 368 

impossibihty of a separate peace 
for, 23, 24 et seq. 

maritime trade obstructed by 
blockade, 312 

mobilization and its difficulties, 
10, II 

obstinate attitude after Sara- 
jevo tragedy, 9 

parlous position of, in 191 7, 209 

peace negotiations with Ru- 
mania, 289, 350 

peace terms to, 200 

policy during war, Count Czer 
nin on, 357 

racial problems in, 211, 212 

separatist tactics in, 183 

Social Democracy in, 25, 35 

terms on which she could make 
peace, 33 

the Archdukes, 26 

views on a "tripartite solution" 
of Polish question, 223 
Austrian delegation. Count Czer- 

nin's speech to, 330 et seq. 
Austrian government and the 
Ukrainian question, 269, 270, 


Austrian navy, the, Franz Fer- 
dinand and, 58 
Austrian Ruthenians, leader of, 

276, 278 
Austro- Hungarian demands at 

Bukharest negotiations, 351 
Austro-Hungarian army, General 
Staff of, 25 
inferiority of, 25 
Austro-Hungarian Monarchy, the, 
and foreign policy, 150 
peace idea of, 195 
Austro-Polish question, the, and 
the Ukrainian demands, 269 
no bar to peace, 363 
solution of, 222 et seq. 
Avarescu, interview with, 293 
retirement of, 355 


Baernreither, his views of a 
separate peace, 256 

Balkan wars, the, 6, 7 

Balkans, the, troubles in: atti- 
tude of German Emperor, 78 

Baralong episode, the, 149 

Bathurst, Captain, and consump- 
tion of breadstuff s, 327 
on an "un-English " system, 328 

Bauer, Doctor, German-Austrian 
Secretary of State, 2 1 

Bauer, Herr, houses Trotzky's 
library, 262 

Bavarian troops enter into the 
Tyrol, 31 

Belgian neutrality violated by 
Germany, 16 

Belgian question, the, Germany 
ready for negotiations with 
England on, 201 

Belgium, England's promise to, 16 
German entry into, 16 
Germany's views regarding, 175, 

invasion of, changes England's 
poHcy, 3 

Benckendorff, Count, at London 
Conference, 307 

Benedict XV, Pope, Austria's 
answer to peace note of, 195 
German reply to, 365 
proposals for peace by, 187, 197 

Berchtold, Count, and Franz Fer- 
dinand, 50 
and the Rumanian question, 

criticized by pro-war party at 

Vienna, 38 

ultimatum to Serbia, 8 

vacillation of, 11 

Berhn, Byzantine atmosphere of, 

the English Ambassador de- 
mands his passport, 16 
Bessarabia, Bolshevism in, 295 
Bethraann-HoUweg, and Austria's 



willingness to cede Galicia, 


and the Supreme Military Com- 
mand, 174 
draws up a peace proposal, 


opposes U-boat warfare, 131, 

optimistic view of U-boat cam- 
paign, 169 et seq. 
replies to author's expose, 168 
requests Vienna Cabinet to ac- 
cept negotiations, 9, 10 
visits western front, 84 
Bilinski, Herr von, and the future 

of Poland, 227 
Bismarck, Prince, and the invinci- 
bility of the army, 20 
and William II, 60 
dealings with William I, 75 
heritage of, becomes Germany's 

curse, 17 
his policy of "blood and iron," 


Bizenko, Madame, murders Gen- 
eral Sacharow, 244 
Blockade, enemies feeling the grip 
of, 329 
of Germany, 312 
why established by Great Brit- 
ain, 313 
Bohemia as a possible theater of 
war: author's reflections on, 
Bolsheviks and the Kieff Commit- 
tee, 273 
Bolsheviks, dastardly behavior of, 
destruction wrought in Ukraine, 

enter Kieff, 277, 278 
Bolshevism, Czernin on, 240, 246 
in Bessarabia, 295 
in Russia, 235, 240, 255 
terrorism of, 252, 255 
the Entente and, 304 
Bosnia, as compensation to Aus- 
tria, 230 

Bozen, proposals for cession of, 

190, 193 
Bratianu, a tactless proceeding by, 

apprises author of Sarajevo 
tragedy, 97 

collapse of, 112 

Ministry of, 100 

on Russia, 292 

reproaches author, no 
"Bread peace," origin of the term, 

Brest-Litovsk, a dejected Jew at, 

a victory for German militar- 
ism, 215 

answer to Russian peace pro- 
posals, 249 

arrival of Trotzky at, 259 

conflict with Ukrainians at, 262 

episode of Rumanian peace, 289 

evacuation of occupied areas: 
difficulties of, 344 

first peace concluded at, 278 

frontier question, 232 

further Ukrainian representa- 
tion at, 332 

heated discussions at, 253, 254 

object of negotiations at, 337 

peace negotiations at, 242 et 

seq., 343 
Russians threaten to withdraw 

from, 253 
territorial questions at, 261, 262, 

263, 273 
Ukrainian delegation and their 
claims, 230, 258, 346 
Briand, peace negotiations with, 203 
Brinkmann, Major, transmits Pe- 
tersburg information to Ger- 
man delegation, 255 
British losses by submarines, 322 
trade, and result of submarine 
warfare, 323 
Bronstein and Bolshevism, 235 
Brotfrieden ("Bread peace"), 286 
Budapest, author's address to 
party leaders at, 194, 195 



demonstration against Germany 
in, 259 
Buftea, Treaty of, 355 
Bukharest, fall of, 112 

Peace of, 7, 92, 113, 242 et seg^.^ 

report of peace negotiations at, 


Zeppelin attacks on, 114 et seq. 
Bulgaria, a dispute with Turkey, 
and the Dobrudsha question, 

293, 355 
her relations with America, 141 

humiliation of, 7 

negotiations with the Entente, 

181, 182, 299 

question of her neutrality, 12 

secession of, 205 

Bulgarian representatives at Brest, 


Bulow, Prince, exposes William II, 

Burian, Count, 121, 222 

and the division of Galicia, 
272 draws up a peace proposal, 

his Red Book on Rumania, iii, 

succeeded by author, 129 
visits German headquarters, 234 
Busche, von dem, and territorial 

concessions, 12 1 

Cachin, his attitude at French 

Socialist Congress, 238 
Cambon, M., attends the London 

Conferenc , 307 
Capelle and U-boats, 148 
Carmen Sylva {see Elizabeth, 

Queen of Rumania) 
Carol, King, a fulfilled prophecy 

of, 99 
and Serbia, 14 
last days of, 102 

peculiar policy of government 

of, 92 
tactfulness of, 90 
Tsar's visit to, 99 
urges acceptance of ultimatum, 

visited by Franz Ferdinand, 89 
Carp, 93, 99, 107 
Catarau, and the crime at Debru- 

zin, loi 
Central-European question, the, 

the terror of the Entente, 192 
Central Powers, and the Bratianu 

Ministry, no 
enemy blockade of, 148 
favorable news in 191 7, 160 
why they adopted submarine 

warfare, 313 e/ seq. 
Charles VIII, Emperor, and Franz 

Ferdinand, 47 
and problem of nationality, 213 
and the principle of ministerial 

responsibility, 64 
and the Ukrainian question, 272 
apprised by author of critical 

condition of food-supply, 264, 

cautions the Kaiser, 353 
communicates with King Ferdi- 
nand on Rumanian peace, 288 
confers a title on eldest son of 

Franz Ferdinand, 52 
correspondence with Prince Six- 

tus, 183 
frequent absences from Vienna, 

his ever-friendly demeanor, 66, 

invites Crown Prince to Vienna, 


opposes U-boat warfare, 366 

reinstates Archduke Joseph Fer- 
dinand, 70 

rejoices at peace with Ukraine, 

submits author's expose to Will- 
iam II, 164, 364 



suggests sacrifices for ending 

Worid War, 85, 86 
visits South Slav provinces, 68 
Clam-Martinic, Count, and the 

customs question, 188 
and U-boat campaign, 136 
attends conference on Polish 

question, 228 
opposes submarine warfare, 366 
Clemenceau, M., and Germany, 

and the Peace of Versailles, 

dominant war aim of, 205, 


Colloredo-Mannsfeld, Count, at 
Brest- Li to vsk, 263 
attends conference on U-boat 

question, 137 
meets author, 243 

Compulsory international arbitra- 
tion, 191, 197, 198 

Conrad, Chief of the General 
Staff, 50 

Constantinople, an Entente group 
in, 182 

Corday, Charlotte, cited, 252 

Cossacks, the, 236 

Courland demanded by Germany, 

Crecianu, Ambassador Jresnea, 
house damaged in Zeppelin 
attack on Bukharest, 117 

Csatth, Alexander, mortally 
woimded, 10 1 

Csicserics, Lieut. Field-Marshal, 


at Brest-Litovsk, 263 

Czechs, the, attitude of, regarding 

a separate peace, 28 
Czemin, Count Ottokar, a candid 

chat with Franz Ferdinand, 


a hostile Power's desire for 

peace, 158 
a scene at Konopischt, 45 
abused by a braggart and brawl- 
er, 94 

acquaints Emperor of food 

shortage, 264, 266 
activities for peace with Ru- 
mania, 287 et seq. 
Ambassador to Rumania, 8 
an appeal for confidence, 342 
and American intervention, 


and the reinstatement of Arch- 
duke Joseph Ferdinand, 70 
and the Ukrainian question (see 

answers explanation of an Amer- 
ican request, 144, 145 
appeals to Germany for food, 

265, 267, 361 
appointed Ambassador to Bu- 
kharest, 87 
apprises Berchtold of decision of 

Cabinet Council, 14 
attends conference on U-boat 

warfare, 137 
avoided by Pan-Germans, 179 
becomes Minister of Foreign 

Affairs, 129 
breakfasts with Kuhlmann, 256 
confers with Tisza, 32, 33 
conflicts with the Kaiser, 367 
conversation with Trotzky, 277 
converses with Crown Prince, 

criticizes Michaelis, 179 
decorated by King Carol, 100 
disapproves of U-boat warfare, 


dismissal of, 204, 216, 297 
extracts bearing on a trip to 

western front, 83, 84 
friction with the Emperor, 234, 


his hopes of a peace of under- 
standing, 23 et seq., 195, 232, 

^ 241,363,365 

imparts peace terms to Mar- 
ghiloman, 296 

informs Emperor of proceedings 
at Brest, 255 

interviews King Ferdinand, 294 



issues passports for Stockholm 

Conference, 187, 365 
journeys to Brest-Litovsk, 243 
learns of the assassination of 

Franz Ferdinand, 97 
loss of a despatch-case, 1 1 1 
loyalty to Germany, 359 
lunches with Prince of Bavaria, 

meets with Emperor William II, 

misunderstandings resulting 

from a speech by, 22, 26 
nominated to the Herrenhaus, 

note to American government, 


obtains a direct statement from 

William II, 65 
on a separate peace, 359 
on Austria's policy during war, 

on Bolshevism, 240, 246 

on President Wilson's program, 


on U-boat warfare, 166, 199, 


passages of arms with Luden- 
dorff, 275 

peace program of, 331 

persecution of, 232 

Polish leaders and, 227 

President Wilson on, 215 

private talk with the Emperor, 

sends in his resignation, 27 

sets interned prisoners at lib- 
erty, 108, 109 

speech to Austrian delegation, 
330 et seq. 

threatens a separate peace with 
Russia, 254 

unfounded charges against, 180 

urges sacrifice of Alsace-Lor- 
raine, 82 

William IPs gift to, 73 

with Emperor Charles visits 
eastern front, 65 

Danube Monarchy, the, a vital 

condition for existence of 

Hungarian state, 224 

dangers of a political structure 

for, 224 

Debruzin, sensational crime at, 

Declaration of London, the, 312 
D'Esperey, General Franchet, and 

ICarolj^i, 289 
Deutsch, Leo, and the Marxian 

Social Democrats, 235 
Devonport, Lord, on the food 

question, 328 
Disarmament, negotiations re- 
specting, 4 
international, 191, 197, 206, 340 
question of, 202 
Divorces in Rumania, 96, 97 
Dobrudsha, the, acquisition of, 92 
assigned to Bulgaria, 298, 299 
cession of, at peace with Ru- 
mania, 355 
King Ferdinand and, 295 
Marghiloman's view on, 296 
question discussed with Ava- 

rescu, 293 
Turkish attitude concerning, 
298, 299 
Dualism, the curse of, 154 


East Galicia, cession of, de- 
manded by Ukrainians, 267 
et seq. 
"Echinstvo" group, the, 236 
Edward VII, King, and Emperor 
Francis Joseph, i, 2 
and William II, 73 
encircling policy of, i , 73 
Elizabeth, Queen of Rumania, a 
word-picture by, 103 
an operation for cataract, 105 
her devotion to King Carol, 105 



EUenbogen, Doctor, and Socialist 
Conference at Stockholm, 187 
plain speaking by, 30 
England, an effort at rapproche- 
ment with Germany and its 
failure, 201 
and dissolution of military 

power in Germany, 205 
and the elder Richthofen, 274, 


attitude of, at beginning of 
World War, 18, 19 

blockade of, by U-boats, 160, 

bread shortage in, 327 

declares war on Germany, 16 

discards Declaration of London, 

distress in, from U-boat war- 
fare, 162 

distrust of Germany's intentions 
in, 206 

dread of gigantic growth of 
Germany in, i 

Flowtow's tribute to, 135 

food-supply of, 325 

freedom in, 367 

her desire to remain neutral at 
opening of war, 2 

negotiates with Germany on 
naval disarmament, 4 

pubHc opinion in, after Sarajevo 
tragedy, 9 

refusal to restore German colo- 
nies, 185, 190 

shortage of potatoes in, 328 

the pacifist party in, 187 

"unbending resolve" of, to 
shatter Germany, 36, 81 
English mentality, a typical in- 
stance of, 4 

English Socialists, 238 
Entente, the, adheres to Pact of 
London, 233, 241 

and arming of merchant vessels, 

and Italy, 31 
and the trial of William II, 76 

answers President Wilson, 133, 

as instruments in a world rev- 
olution, 304 
Austria pressed to join, 2 
demands abolition of German 
militarism, 184, 189, 191, 193, 
desire of final military victory, 

exterminates Prussian militar- 
ism, 304 
impression on, of author's speech 

at Budapest, 198 
mine-laying by, 146 
peace proposals to, 22, 23 
rejects first peace offer, 130 
suspicious of Germany's plans, 3 
their "unbending resolve" to 

shatter Germany, 36, 358 
views as to peace, 189 
Enver Pasha, his influence in 

Turkey, 260, 300 
Erzberger, Herr, agrees with 
"Czemin scheme," 206, 365 
and author's secret report to 
the Emperor, 173 (note) 
Espionage in Rumania, no 
Esterhazy succeeds Tisza, 153 
Esthonia demanded by Germany, 

277, 349 
Eugen, Archduke, 26 

Europe after the war, 196 

European tension, beginnings of, i 


Fasciotti, Baron, and Austro- 
Hungarian action in Bel- 
grade, 14 
Fellowes, Sir Ailwyn, admits suc- 
cess of U-boats, 327 
Ferdinand, King of Rumania, au- 
thor's interview with, 294 
German opinion of, 290 
Queen Elizabeth's fondness for, 




Ferdinand of Bulgaria, King, anti- 
Serbian policy of, 59 
Filippescu, Nikolai, a proposal by, 


Fleck, Major, at Nordbahnhof, 

Flotow, Baron, interview with 

Hohenlohe, 133 

reports on German attitude on 

U-boat warfare, 134 

Fourteen Points, Wilson's, 210 et 

seq., 303, 338, 339, 355 et seq. 
France and Austria: effect 
Vienna troubles, 278, 279 
Bethmann's tribute to, 171 
distrust of Germany's inten- 
tions in, 206 
insists on restoration of Alsace- 
Lorraine, 189 
opening of war a surprise to, 2 
the pacifist party in, 187 
Francis Joseph, Emperor, a tribute 
to, 54 
advised to accept negotiations, 


and Franz Ferdinand, 48, 53 
and the principle of ministerial 

responsibility, 64 
author's audience with, 13 
death of, 55, 56 
gives audience to author, 54 
King Edward VII and, i, 2 
on the Peace of Bukharest, 7 
opposes Filippescu's scheme, 


Franz Ferdinand, Archduke, a 

fortune-teller's prediction 
concerning, 51 
anti-Magyar point of view, 44, 

antipathy to Himgary, 41, 43, 


as gardener, 40 

as husband and father, 51, 52 
dislike for the Germans of, 58 
false rumors concerning, 49 
fearlessness of, 52 
friendships of, 45 

Goluchowski, Count, and, 42, 43 
Great- Austrian program of, 47, 

his high opinion of Pallavicini, 6 
his sense of humor, 47 
makes advances to the Kaiser, 

marriage of, 47, 51 

mentality of, 41 
personality of, 39 
pro-Rumanian proclivities of, 

87, 88, 89 
tragic end of, 56 {see also Sara- 
jevo tragedy) 
views on foreign policy of, 59 
Freedom of the seas, 197 

attacked by Entente, 312, 313 
neutrals and, 316 
President Wilson on, 313, 339 
French Socialistic Congress, 238 
Freyburg, Baron von, attends 
conference on U-boat ques- 
tion, 137 
Friedrich, Archduke, a tribute to, 
tact of, 83 
Frontier rectifications, Hungary 

and, 287, 297, 351, 362 
Fiirstenberg, Karl, a request of, 
refused at Vienna, 127 
report on Rumanian question 
by, 87 


Galicia, proposed cession of, 22, 
86, 163, 177, 193, 364 
partition of, 232 
Tiszaand, 151 
Gas attacks, reason for Germany's 

use of, 19 
Gautsch, Baron, a code telegram 
from, 255 
at Nordbahnhof, 243 
George, Lloyd, admits grave state 
of grain supplies, 327 
and the Peace of Versailles, 304 
author in agreement with, 198 



confers with Orlando, 183 

Doctor Helfferich's allusions to, 

his desire to crush Germany, 208 

influence of, 207 

on disarmament, 206 
George V, King, his telegram to. 

Prince Henry of Prussia, 10 
German army, the General Staff, 25 
German- Austria, 200 

population of, 35 
German Empire, the, creation of, 

German government, versus Ger- 
man diplomacy, 12 
German mentality, a typical in- 
stance of, 5 
miHtary party refuse peace, 32 
German Nationalists and Count 

Andrassy, 29, 30 
German policy founders on heri- 
tage left by Bismarck, 17 
German-Russian differences as to 

occupied areas, 336 
German Supreme Command and 

evacuation question, 344 
Germans and a friendly attitude 
toward America, 138 
at Brest conference, 249 
attitude of, toward Poland, 226 
inferior mentality of, 79 
"insatiable appetite" of, 297 
Lenin and, 240 
oppose peace negotiations with 

Rumania, 289 
refuse to renounce occupied 

territory, 251 
the dynastic fidelity of, 61 
Germany, a moral coalition 
against, 3 
advocates unrestricted U-boat 

warfare, 130 et seq. 
and Alsace-Lorraine, 82 
and Austro- Hungarian military 

action in Ukraine, 283 
answers the papal note, 198 
blind faith in invincibility of her 
army, 20 

blockade of, and her retaliatory 

measures, 19 
confident of victory, 27, 82 
culpability of, in matter of 

peace, 206 
decides on U-boat campaign, 

declares armistice with Russia 

at an end, 350 
disillusionment of, 36 
dissatisfaction in, over peace 

resolution in Reichstag, 174 
England declares war on, 16 
evil times in store for, 368 
her dream of a victorious peace, 

358» 363 
her hopes of food shortage in 

England, 162 

Michaelis on internal economic 

and poHtical situation in, 175, 

176, 177. 178 
military party of, 22, 359, 362, 

negotiations respecting naval 

disarmament, 4 
post-war intentions of, 206, 207 
restricts building of U-boats, 

revolution in, 360 
rupture with America, 143 
unsuccessful effort at rapproche- 
ment, 201 
violates neutraHty of Belgium, 
Goluchowski, Count, vacillation 

of, 41 
Gorlitz, battle of, 109, 122, 361 _ 
Gratz, Doctor, a good suggestion 
by, 276 
author's discussion with, 243 
on Austro-PoHsh solution of 
PoHsh question, 271 
^ Great Rumania, question of, 91 
Great War, the, psychology of 
various cities, 219 
(See World War) 
Grey, Sir Edward, an interview 
with Lichnowsky, 9 



at London Conference, 307 
purposes negotiations, 9 


Hadik, apathetic attitude of, 265 
Hague Convention, the, 312 
Hapsburgs, Empire of, the Treaty 
of London and, 24, 33, 34, 38 
Haus, Admiral, favors submarine 
warfare, 366 
in Vienna, 137 
Hauser, and the question of sepa- 
rate peace, 256 
Hebel, appointment for, 172 
Helfferich, Doctor, disclosures by, 
179 (note) 
on attitude of William II during 

Balkan troubles, 78 
speech on submarine warfare, 
169, 320 et seq. 
Henry of Prussia, Prince, a tele- 
gram from King George to, 


Hertling, Count, advised to sup- 
press "Der Kaiser im Felde," 

73, 74 
becomes Imperial Chancellor, 


President Wilson on, 216 
succeeds Michaelis, 1 79 
Herzegovina as compensation to 

Austria, 230 
Hindenburg, Field-Marshal, mod- 
esty of, 142 
popularity of, in Germany, 20 
Hoffmann, General, an unfortu- 
nate speech by, 264 
and plans for outer provinces, 

high words with Kiihlmann, 262 

received by the Kaiser, 256, 257 

receives a telegram from Peters- 
burg, 255 

visited by author, 243 
Hohenberg, Duchess of, 47 

welcomed in Rumania, 89 
Hohendorf, General Conrad von, 

and his responsibility for the 
war, 2 1 (note) 
Hohenlohe, Prince, and settlement 
of Wedel's request, 143 
free speech from William II, 74, 

report on U-boat campaign, 131, 
132, 142 
Holtzendorff, Admiral, and sub- 
marine campaign, 166 
arrives in Vienna, 136 
guarantees results of U-boat 
campaign, 138, 366 
Hungarian Ruthenians, Wekerle 
on, 270 
Social Democrats, 187 
Himgary and cession of her terri- 
tory, 121 
and Rumanian intervention, 87, 

120, 121 
and the alliance with Rumania, 

87 et seq. 
demands of, at Bukharest, 351 
frontier rectification question, 

287, 296, 351, 362 
her influence on the war, 154 
indignation in, at author's ap- 
pointment to Bukharest, 88 
"just punishment" of, no 
opposes economical alliance with 

Rumania, 297, 352 
question of a separate peace, 31 
repellent attitude of, 122 
struggle for Hberty in, 224 
why her army was neglected, 25 

Imperial, Marchese, points sub- 
mitted to London Conference 
by, 307 

International arbitration {see Ar- 

International disarmament, 191, 
196, 197 

International law, Germany's 
breach of, in adoption of U- 
boat warfare, 312, 313 



Internationalists, Russian, 235 
Ischl, an audience with Emperor 

Francis Joseph at, 13 
Iswolsky, 13 
Italy, Allied defeat in, 205 

and Albania, 7 

and the Peace of Versailles, 304 

Czernin on, 340 

declares a blockade, 313 

points submitted to London 
Conference, 307 

stands in way of a peace of 
understanding, 209 

ultimatum to, 14 

why she entered the war, 3 

Jaczkovics, Vicar Michael, tragic 

death of, 100, 10 1 
Jagow, Herr von, a frank dis- 
closure by, 16 
Joffe, Herr, a circular letter to 
Allies, 332 
conversation with, at Brest, 245 
criticisms on the Tsar, 252 
Jonescu, Take, and the Sarajevo 

tragedy, 98 
Joseph Ferdinand, Archduke, 26 
appointed chief of Air Force, 72 
reinstatement of, 70 
relinquishes his command, 71 
the Luck episode, 70 


Kameneff at Brest, 244, 349 

Karachou, Leo, secretary of peace 
^ delegation, 335 

Karl, Emperor, peace proposals to 
the Entente, 23 

Karl of Schwarzenberg, Prince, 
Franz Ferdinand and, 45, 46 

Karolyi and Rumanian peace 
negotiations, 289 
his attitude before the Ruma- 
nian declaration of war, 32 

Kerenski and the offensive against 
Central Powers, 235 
newspaper report of condition of 
his health, 236 
Kiderlen-Waechter, a satirical re- 
mark by, 73 
Kieff, a mission to, 280 

entered by Bolsheviks, 277, 278 
in danger of a food crisis, 281 
peace conditions at, 231 
Kieff Committee and the Bolshe- 
viks, 273 
Kiel Week, the, 72 
Kienthaler (internationalists), 235 
Konopischt and its history, 39 et 

Kreuznach, a conference at, 163 
KJriegen, Doctor Bogdam, a ful- 
some work by, 73 
Kiihlmann, Doctor, and the food 
shortage, 265, 266 
author's talk with, 247 
difficult position of, 345 
high words with Hoffmann, 262 
his influence, 221 
informed of Rumanian peace 

overtures, 290 
on the Kaiser, 254 
returns to Brest, 256 

Lamezan, Captain Baron, at 

Brest-Litovsk, 259 
Landwehr, General, and the food 

shortage, 265, 267 
Lansdowne, Lord, conciliatory, 

attitude of, 205, 206 
Larin and Ivlenshevik Socialists, 


League of Nations, the, 340 

Lenin, author on, 240 

opposed to offensive against 
Central Powers, 235 
Leopold of Bavaria, Prince, a 
day's shooting with, 257 
chats with author, 244 
Lewicky, M., 268 



Lichnowsky interviews Sir Ed- 
ward Grey, 9 
Li^ge taken by Ludendorff, 25 
Lithuania, Germany and, 277 
Livonia demanded by Germany, 

277, 349 
London, Declaration of, discarded 

by England, 312 

London, Pact of, 24, 190, 192, 200, 


desired amendment to, 164 

text of, 24, 307 et seq. 
Lubin, German demand for evac- 
uation of, 226, 227, 228 
Luck episode, the, 26, 120 

Archduke Joseph Ferdinand 
and, 70 
Ludendorff and Belgium, 208 

and the Polish question, 229, 

candid admission by, 275 

compared with enemy states- 
men, 22 

confident of success of U-boat 
warfare, 142 

congratulates Hoffmann, 264 

displays "a gleam of insight," 

dominating influence of, 130, 
142, 143 

German hero-worship of, 20 

his independent nature, 69, 70 

how he captured Liege, 25, 26 

personality of, 363 
Lueger and Franz Ferdinand, 58 
Luxemburg, German invasion of, 


JMackensen, a fleet of Zeppelins 
at Bukharest, 114 
failure at Maracesci, 290 
headquarters at Bukharest, 119 
Magyars, the, and Franz Ferdi- 
nand, 44, 58 
author and, 88 
Majorescu and Austria's policy, 

and territorial concessions, no, 

forms a Ministry, 91, 93 
Mandazescu, arrest and extradi- 
tion of, lOI 
Maracesci, attack on, 290 
Marghiloman and co-operation of 
Rumania, 121 
forms a Cabinet, 296, 352 
Marie, Queen of Rumania, Eng- 
lish sympathies of, in, 112 
Mame, the, first battle of, 20 
Martow and the Menshevik party, 


Martynoz and the Russian Inter- 
nationalists, 235 

Medwjedew, J. G., Ukrainian dele- 
gate to Brest, 333 

Mennsdorff, Ambassador, inter- 
views General Smuts, 189 

Menshevik party, the, 235 

Meran, the Entente's proposals re- 
garding, 190, 193 

Merchant vessels, arming of, au- 
thor on, 317 

Merey meets Czernin at Brest, 243 

Michaelis, Doctor, appointed Im- 
perial Chancellor, 175 
defines Germany's views regard- 
ing Belgium, 175, 176, 177, 178 
on peace proposals, 176 
Pan-Germanism of, 179 

"Might before Right," Bismarck- 
ian principle of , 18 

Miklossy, Bishop Stephan, mar- 
velous escape of, loi 

Militarism, German faith in, 20 
England's idea of German, 186 

Monarchists V. Republicans, 60, 61 

Monarchs, hypnotic complacency 
of, 67 et seq. 

Moutet, attitude of, at French 
Socialist conference, 238 


Nationality, problem of, 212 
Franz Ferdinand and, 213 



Naval disarmament, negotiations 

on, 4 
Nicholas, Grand Duke, and the 

military party in Russia, 2 
Nicolai, Tsar, Joffe on, 252 
North Sea, the, blockade of, 312 
Noxious gas, why used by Ger- 
many, 19 

Odessa, in danger of a food crisis, 

Orlando confers with Ribot and 

Lloyd George, 183 
Otto, Archduke, brother of Franz 

Ferdinand, 42 

Pallavicini, Markgraf, discusses 
the political situation with 
author, 6 
Pan-Germans, 362 

conditions on which they would 
conclude peace, 179 
Pan-Russian Congress, the, 236, 

237, 238 
Papal note, the, 187, 198 
Austria's reply to, 195 
German reply to, 365 
Paris, negotiations in camera at, 

Peace by sacrifice, 359 
Peace Congress at Brest-Litovsk, 

242 et seq. 
Peace movement, real historical 

truth concerning, 207 
Peace negotiations, Count Czer- 
nin on, 330 et seq. 
deadlock in, 203 
the Pope's proposals, 187, 195, 

197,365 ^ 

Peace resolution, a, and its con- 
sequences, 174 

Penfield, Mr., American Ambas- 
sador to Vienna, 147 

People's Socialists, the, 236 

Peschechonow, Minister of Food, 

Petersburg and the Ukraine, 341 
Plechanow, Georgei, and the Rus- 
sian Social Patriots, 235 
Poklewski, Russian Ambassador 

to Rumania, 98 
Poland, a conference on question 
of, 228 
becomes a kingdom, 222 
conquest of, 120 
Count Czemin on, 336 
Emperor Charles's offer regard- 
ing, 86 
future position of, 225 
German standpoint on, 226 
Michaelis on, 177 
reorganization of, 163 
the German demands, 272 
unrepresented at Brest, and the 
reason, 336, 347 
Poles, the, and Brest-Litovsk ne- 
gotiations, 231 
party divisions among, 227 
Polish question, and the Central- 
European project, 232 
difficulties of, 222 
Popow, Bulgarian Minister of 

Justice, 248 
Pro-Rumanian party and its head, 

Prussian militarism, England's 
idea of, 186 
extermination of, 304 
fear of, 194 
{See a/jo German military party) 

Quadruple Alliance, the, dis- 
sension in, 279 
Germany as shield of, 204 
peace terms in Rumania, 291 

Radek, a scene with a chauffeur, 



Radoslawoff^ ignorant of negotia- 
tions with Entente, i8i 

Randa, Lieut. -Col. Baron, a tell- 
ing remark by, ii8 
and Rumanian peace overtures, 
289, 291, 351 

Reichstag, the, a peace resolution 
passed in, 174 
demands peace without annexa- 
tion, 174, 178 

Renner and the Stockholm Con- 
gress, 187 

Republicans i). Monarchists, 60, 61 

Ressel, Colonel, 294 

Revertera negotiates for peace, 
183, 189 

Revolution, danger of, 165 

Rhondda, Lord, British Food 
Controller, 169 

Ribot confers with Orlando, 183 
statement by, 170 

Richthofen brothers, the, 274, 275 

Rosenberg meets author at Brest, 

Rudolf, Crown Prince, and Franz 

Ferdinand, 43 

Rumania, 87 et seq. 

a change of government in, 91 

a land of contrasts, 95 

affairs in, after Sarajevo trag- 
edy, 98 

and the Peace of Bukharest, 7 

author's negotiations for peace, 

between two stools, 291 

declares war, 124, 311 

espionage in, no 

freedom of the press in, 95 

Germany and, 292, 297 

her treachery to Central Pow- 
ers, 292 

how news of Sarajevo tragedy 
was received in, 98 

Marghiloman forms a Cabinet, 

negotiations for peace, 350 

out of action, 27 

peace concluded with, 355 

question of annexations of, 177, 

question of neutrality, 14, 107 

Russian gold in, 127 

social conditions in, 96 

ultimatum to, 14, 292 

why she entered the war, 3 
Rumanian invasion of Transyl- 
vania, 123 
Riunanians, mistaken views of 
strength of, 290 

their love of travel, 96 
Russia, a contemplated peace 
with, 235 

abdication of the Tsar, 159 

an appeal to German soldiers, 

begins military operations with- 
out a declaration of war, 3 

Bolshevism in, 235, 240, 255 

declares for cessation of hos- 
tilities, 350 

difference of opinion in, as to 
continuance of war, 235 et seq. 

enters the war, 9 

Francis Joseph's inquiry as 
to a possible revolution in, 

her responsibility for Great War, 

incites German army to revolt, 


negotiations for peace, 330 

out of action, 27 
peace treaty signed, 350 
prepared for war, 127 
the military party in, 3, 11 
ultimatum to Rumania, 292 
Russian Revolution, the, 159, 165, 

235 et seq. 
Russians, their fear of Trotzky, 264 
Ruthenian districts of Hungary, 
Ukrainian demands, 269 

Sacharow, General, murder of, 



St.-Mihlel, author at, 84 
St.-Privat, reminiscences of, 84 
Salzburg negotiations, the, 234 
Sarajevo, the tragedy of, 7, 56 
sounds death knell of the Mon- 
archy, 37 
Sassonoff , a momentous statement 
by, 100 
attitude of, after declaration of 

war, 9 
visits Bukharest, 128 
Satonski, Wladimir Petrowitch, 


Schachrai, W. M., at Brest, 333 

Schonburg, Alvis, and the Em- 
peror Charles, 71 

Schonerer, Deputy, Franz Ferdi- 
nand and, 58 

Secret diplomacy, abolition of: 
author's view, 338, 339 

Sedan, a house with a history at, 

Seidler, Doctor von, a. faux pas by, 


and the food shortage, 267 

and the partition of Galicia, 232 
and the Ukrainian question, 

apathetic attitude of, 265, 266 
author's meeting with, 256 
visits South Slav provinces, 68 
Seitz, and the Stockholm Con- 
ference, 187 
Serbia, arrogance of, 7 

ultimatum to, 8 
Sewrjuk, M., 268 
Sixtus, Prince, letters from Em- 
peror Charles to, 183 
SkobelefE and the Mensheviks, 235 
Skrzynski, Herr von, 278 
Slapowszky, Johann, tragic death 

of, lOI 
Slav provinces, a visit by the 

Emperor to, 68 
Smuts, General, interview with 

Mennsdorff, 189 
Social Democrats and the ques- 
tion of peace, 30, 35 

and the Stockholm Conference, 

Hungarian, 270 

opposed to sacrifice of Alsace- 
Lorraine, 82 

"Social Patriots," Russian, 235 

Social Revolutionary party, the, 

Socialists and offensive against 
Central Powers, 235 

Spanish reports of war-weariness 
in England and France, 160 

Stirbey, Prince, 293 

Stockholm, a Socialist Conference 
at, 187, 365 
Russians ask for a conference 
at, 255 

Stockholm Congress, negative re- 
sult of, 189 

Strikes and their danger, 342 

Stumm, von, on Ukrainian claims, 

Sturdza, Lieutenant-Colonel, ex- 
traordinary behavior of, 94 

Stiirgkh, Count, 21 (note) 
recollections of, 53 

Submarine warfare, author's note 
to American government on, 


Czemin on, 366 

destruction without warning 
justified,- 315 

enemy losses in, 322 

enemy's "statistical smoke- 
screens" as to, 321 

question of safety of passengers 
and crews, 314 

speech by Doctor Helfferich on, 

why adopted by Central Pow- 
ers, 313, etseq. 

(See also U-boats) 
Sudekum, Herr, and Austria-Hun- 
gary's peace proposals, 173, 

Supreme Military and Naval 
Command, conditions of, for 
peace negotiations, 177 



Switzerland, reported disturbances 

in: author's disclaimer, 367 
Sycophancy in high places, 67, 69, 

12, 73, 74 
Sylvester, Doctor, and the Ger- 
man-Austrian National As- 
sembly, 30 

Talaat Pasha, arrives at Brest, 
influence of, 161 
threatens to resign, 300 
Talleyrand, a dictum of, 194 
Tamowski, Count, author's opin- 
ion of, 125 
German Ambassador to Wash- 
ington, 143 
Thomas, M., war speech on Rus- 
sian front, 238 
Tisza, Count Stephen, 21 (note) 
a characteristic letter from, 223, 

224, 225, 226 
advocates unrestricted U-boat 

warfare, 130, 366 
and American intervention, 138 
and author's appointment to 

Bukharest, 88 
and cession of Hungarian ter- 
ritory, 151 
and control of foreign policy, 

and the Stockholm Conference, 

assassination of, 154 

at a U-boat campaign confer- 
ence, 137 
author's conference with, 31, 32 
defends Count Czernin, 123 
dismissal of, 152, 225 
Franz Ferdinand and, 44 
his influence in Hungary, 31 
leads anti-Rumanian party, 87 
lively correspondence with au- 
thor, 144, 145 
on dangers of pessimism, 172 
on the Treaty of London, 31 

opposes annexation of Rumania, 

opposes the war, 11 
opposes U-boat warfare, 147, 366 
peace proposals of, 156 
pro-memoria of, on Rumanian 

peace negotiations, 288 
question of frontier rectifica- 
tions, 351 
refuses cession of Hungarian 

territory, 122 
speech at conference on Polish 

question, 228 
tribute to, 154 
views regarding Poland, 222 
visits the Southern Slavs, 34 
Transylvania, 193 

opposition to cession of, 122 
proposed cession of, 32, 57 
Rumanian invasion of, 123 
Trentino, the, offered to Italy, 86 
Trieste, Entente proposals regard- 
ing, 190, 193 
"Tripartite solution" of Polish 

question, Tisza on, 223 
Tmka and the customs dues, 188 
Trotzky, a tactical blunder by, 263 
accepts the German- Austria 

ultimatum, 261 
and the Internationalist party, 

arrives at Brest, 258, 259 
declines to sign, 278 
his brother-in-law Kameneff, 

his library, 262 
negotiations with, 276 
opposed to ill-treatment of war 

prisoners, 262 
ultimatum to, 260 
Trudoviks, the, 236 
Tscheidse, and the Mensheviks, 

235, 237 
Tschemow, speaks at Peasants' 

Congress, 236 
Tschirsky, Herr von, a momen- 
tous communication to Berch- 
told, 9 



and a telegram from King 

George, 10 
his desire for war, 37 
untactful diplomacy of, 12 
Tseretelli and the Menshevik 

party, 235 
Turkey, a dispute with Bulgaria, 
asks for munitions, 108 
how the Sultan was deposed, 260 
probable secession of, 300 
Turkish Grand Vizier arrives at 

Brest, 259 
Turks, a reported advance by a 
hostile Power for a separate 
peace, 161 
at Brest Conference, 247 
Tyrol, the, German troops in, 28 


U-BOAT warfare, 129 et seq. 
a conference in Vienna on, 137 
"a terrible mistake," 141 
and America's entry into the 

war, 142 
and why adopted by Germany, 

Czernin on, 166 

political arguments against, 132, 


what it achieved, 199 

(See also Submarine warfare) 
Ugron, Herr von, and the "tripar- 
tite solution" of Polish ques- 
tion, 223 
Ukraine, and Petersburg, 341 
Bolshevik destruction in, 281 
food-supplies from, 280 et seq.^ 


military action in, and the con- 
sequences, 282 

peace concluded with, 278 

revolution in, 282 

survey of imports from, 284 

treaty signed, 349 
Ukrainian Army General Com- 
mittee appointed, 238 

delegates at Brest, 257, 332 
Workers' and Peasants' gov- 
ernment, a declaration from, 


Ukrainians and their demands, 

dictatorial attitude of, 268 
negotiations with, 347 
United States, the, scarcity of 

supplies in, 326 
{See also America) 

Versailles, opening of Peace 
Congress at, 218 

terrible nature of, 304 

the Council of Four at, 302 

the Peace of, 21, 302 

triumph of Entente at, 207 
Vienna, a council in, 137 

differences of opinion in, 87 

disastrous effects of troubles in, 

disturbances in, 67 

food shortage and strikes in, 
265, 266, 268, 346 

politicians' views on peace pro- 
posals, 256 

psychology of, 219 

warlike demonstrations at, after 
Sarajevo tragedy, 37, 38 
Vredenburch, Herr von, Dutch 
Ambassador to Riunania, 118 


Wales, Prince of (see Edward 
VII, King) 

Wallachia, occupation of, 112, 

Wallhead, Mr., 327 

Washington Cabinet, and Austria- 
Hungary's attitude to sub- 
marine warfare, 311 

Wassilko, Nikolay, leader of Aus- 
trian Ruthenians, 276, 278 



Wedel, Count, calls on Count 
Czernin, 143 

disclosures of, 179 (note) 

revelations of, 173 (note) 
Weisskirchner, Burgemeister, coins 
the term "bread peace," 286 
Wekerle, Doctor, and the Polish 
question, 225 

author and, 153, 256 

on the Ukrainian question, 

standpoint of, on Rumanian 
peace negotiations, 289, 351 
Western front, an Entente break- 
through on, 205 
Western Powers, the, and Ger- 
many's ambitions, 2 
Wiesner, Ambassador von, and a 
Pan-German, 179 

at Brest-Litovsk, 263 

author discusses Russian peace 
with, 243 
Wilhelm, Crown Prince, and Franz 
Ferdinand, 49 

anxious for peace, 83 

author's conversation with, 85 

his quarters at Sedan, 85 
William I and Bismarck, 75 
William II, Emperor, and Bis- 
marck, 60 

and Franz Ferdinand, 49 

and the German Supreme Mili- 
tary Command, 20 

as causeur, 76 

as the "elect of God," 60, 61 

cause of his ruin, 72 et seq. 

demonstrations against, in the 
Reichstag, 63 

desires to help deposed Tsar, 

difficulties of his political advis- 
ers, 69 

fails to find favor in England, 

his projected division of the 
world, 78 

impending trial of: author's 
protest, 76 

informed of serious nature of 
situation for Allies, 364 

instructions to Kuhlmann, 277 

long years of peaceful govern- 
ment, 78 

longs for peace, 81 

on food troubles in England, 

on impending attack on Italian 
front, 82 

presents author with "Der 
Kaiser im Felde," 73 

Prince Hohenlohe and, 74 

question of his abdication, 85 

the press and, 75 

warlike speeches of, 79 
Wilson, President, advantages of 
his "Fourteen Points," 210 

as master of the world, 214 

author on his Message, 337 

Count Andrassy's note to, 29 

Count Czernin on, 214 

Entente's reply to his peace 
proposal, 133, 136, 138 

his Fourteen Points and the 
Peace of Versailles, 302 

on the freedom of the seas, 


ready to consider peace, 279 
reopens hopes of a peace of un- 
derstanding, 211 
speech to Congress, 215 
text of the Fourteen Points, 

Wolf, K. H., a scene in the 

"Burg," 188 
World-dominion, Germany 'sdream 

of, I, 2 
World organization, a new, prin- 
ciples of, 195 et seq. 
World War, the, an important 
phase of, 122 
attempts at peace, 150 et seq. 
author's impressions and reflec- 
tions on, 217 et seq., 302 et 
by whom started, 21 (note) 
causes of, 3 



President Wilson and, 210 et 

question of responsibility for 

outbreak of, 2 
U-boat warfare in, 129 et seq. 

{see also Submarine warfare 

and U-boat) 
violent measures adopted by 

Germany in, 18, 19 

Zeppelin raids on Bukharest, 1 14 
Zimmermann, Herr, and author's 
peace proposals, 163 
opposes unrestricted U-boat 
warfare, 130, 136 
Zimmerwalder (Russian Interna- 
tionalists), 235 










D500.C95 16 1 GC 
In the world war, by Count